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The Forgotten Hero

Photos and Story on Heroes to Hero Race

  Runners and walkers get ready as Engine 452 prepares to "sound the siren" to officially start the 6th Annual Heroes to Hero 5K Run/Walk on Saturday morning.

Large Turnout for This Year's Heroes to Hero 5K Run/Walk

Bill Bates 

NEWS Correspondent

On Saturday, October 13 many residents from Gloucester City joined residents over in Mount Ephraim along with neighboring communities along with runners and walkers from neighboring states and countries that joined firefighters, family, and friends to participate in the Heroes to Hero 5K Run/Walk from Mount Ephraim Fire Department to Gloucester City Fire Headquarters.

101807_1553_2 A sea of participants cross Kings Highway as they are about to walk under the two aerial apparatuses arched with the American Flag courtesy of Pine Hill and Barrington Fire Department.

The race is organized months in advance by 11 committee members that meet once and sometimes twice a month to put together this great event year after year.

Race Director Jerry Hubbs thanked everyone for attending the 6th annual event that is reserved for a day of honor and celebration of the lives of Jim Sylvester, John West Sr., and Tommy Stewart III who perished along with three little girls, Claudia, Alexandria, and Coletta Slack in the early morning hours of July 4, 2002.

 101807_1553_1 Participants pass by Mount Ephraim's Engine 451 that displays a banner remembering Jimmy, Westy, and Tommy as the walkers turn onto Winthrop Avenue.

Participants pay an inexpensive $20.00 donation where they receive a colored long sleeve tee-shirt along with plenty of free food and free beverages after the race.  Money collected helps provide scholarships to three area high school seniors from Gloucester City High School, Gloucester Catholic High School and Audubon High School who will be attending college or an accredited school for Fire Science, Nursing, Law, Forensic Science or Communications.

101807_1553_3 Kati Viall, Traci Parks, Dawn Parks, and Nikki Campanell pose for a quick photo in front of the patriotic arch finish line after they completed the run/walk.

The remainder of the proceeds are given to the Camden County Hero Scholarship Club who has committed itself to providing scholarships to the five surviving children of our three fallen hero's and children of permanently disabled or deceased firefighters, police officers, and emergency medical personnel from Camden County.

Gold Sponsorships for this year's event were Cooper University Hospital, Browns Family Shop Rite of Brooklawn, Camden County Board of Chosen Freeholders, Magellan Hill Technologies of Mount Laurel, Homestead Carpet Inc. of Gloucester City and Mullica Hill, Holcomb Bus Service of Bellmawr, Sitzler and Sitzler Attorneys at Law of Hainesport, M. James Maley, Jr. - Maley & Associates of Collingswood, Comcast-Spectacor-Philadelphia Flyers, 76ers, Phantoms and Wings, Mount Ephraim Chrysler/Dodge, and Mount Ephraim Exxon.

101707_043 Camden County Freeholders were on hand to thank the participants and congratulate all of the winners and members from the Heroes to Hero 5K Run/Walk. Gloucester City Mayor or City Council was not present for this great event that brought over 1400 participants to the city on race day.

Additional corporate sponsorships were provided by Balloon Celebrations of Stratford, Haddonfield Running Company, Joe Conklin at, Holt's Logistics Inc., OH! Hara's Pub of Gloucester City, New Balance, Corporate Imagination, Charles W. Wigginton Esq. of Gloucester City, Konrad Beer Distributors, Michelob Ultra -, PRD Management, Sign*A*Rama of Gloucester City, Michael I. Slansky - NCTMB, NJ AMTA Sports Chair, Gloucester City and Mount Ephraim Fire Department's.

Race organizers thanked all of the countless volunteers who made this day a great success. Without the help of the volunteers, this race would have not been possible.

Members from the Philadelphia Fire Department proudly pose with their 1st Place Firefighter Team traveling award, a full size solid brass helmet.