REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala.--Redstone Fire Department's Capt. Robert Simmons ran Saturday's 9.11K run in full firefighting gear in honor of the 343 firefighters who died Sept. 11, 2001.

"It's not about me," he said. "It's about the 343. They did a lot more than I did that day."

The 9.11K (5.66 mile) race, commemorating the 10th anniversary of the tragic terrorist attacks, drew 165 runners. "That's like more than double we've ever had," Gaylene Wilson, sports and fitness director, said.

She thanked the race sponsors including the Association of the U.S. Army, Fleet Feet, and Woody Anderson Ford. Vets With Vettes brought 21 Corvettes and served as road guards. The Marine Reserve and Redstone's Ten-Miler Team also helped. The AMC Band provided music at the event near the Sparkman Fitness Center.

Garrison commander Col. John Hamilton thanked all the runners for their support and recalled the morning when hijacked airliners were deliberately flown into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

"We started out that morning not certain of what we were seeing," Hamilton said. "We realized very quickly we were seeing pure evil."

Robert Whitaker, 52, of Owens Cross Roads, won the race in 34 minutes and 15 seconds, a 6:08 pace. The retired Air Force lieutenant colonel, originally from Memphis, is a systems engineer at Cruise Missile Defense Systems.

"Lots of training," Whitaker said, when asked how he won. "I train about 50 miles a week and I'm a very competitive racer in the local area.

"The cool weather really helped. It was kind of nice to run in this cooler weather."

Kathy Youngren, 37, of Huntsville, was the female winner in 37:48, a 6:46 pace. She teaches seventh-grade at Challenger Middle.

"For me I had a pretty good run today," she said. Her personal best time for 10K is 39:47.

Here are the overall and age group winners:

Male, overall: Robert Whitaker (34:15).

Male, 29-under: 1. Tim Wood (38:38), 2. Mark Hull (44:12), 3. Blake Hargrove (45:52). 30-39: 1. Timothy Pitt (34:40), 2. Will Branwell (39:29), 3. Ken Heebner (40:17). 40-49: 1. Andrew Peffer (39:12), 2. Karl Kraus (39:45), 3. Anthony Knight (40:01). 50-59: 1. Gerardo Tomez (37:32), 2. Don Hillis (42:28), 3. Dave Cripps (42:47). 60-over: 1. Jim Wasson (47:07), 2. James Champion (49:00), 3. Stephen Seniuk (51:01).

Female, overall: Kathy Youngren (37:48).

Female, 29-under: 1. Nicole Waits (45:12), 2. Megan White (49:25), 3. Jodi Ewald (50:30). 30-39: 1. Kelly Steele (42:46), 2. Tracey Pollard (43:27), 3. Jamekela Iles (48:34). 40-49: 1. Roberta Hauck (41:19), 2. Patti Holmes (44:54), 3. Lisa Vroonland (46:17). 50-over: 1. Ruth Vanzandt (41:49), 2. Betty Hooper (49:41), 3. Lauren Dirienzo (50:37).

Page last updated Wed September 14th, 2011 at 14:37