Army Logistics University class supports wounded warriors with relay
May 9, 2012
By Amy Perry
FORT LEE, Va. (May 9, 2012) -- Students and instructors from the Command Logistics Officer Course here teamed up to complete a 200-mile journey called the American Odyssey Relay April 27-28.
Twenty-four Army Logistics University Soldiers on two teams of 12 participated in the run that started in Gettysburg, Pa., and ended in Washington, D.C.
"The American Odyssey Relay has three charities that benefit from it, and we ran in support of Team Red, White and Blue which is a non-profit organization that works to transition wounded veterans from their military career to the civilian side," said Capt. Kafi Joseph, a student who helped organize the Fort Lee teams.
The Soldiers ran three legs during the 200 miles, with each leg ranging from 2.8 to 8.7 miles.
Maj. Charles Conway, an instructor for the ALU course, said the event was tough, but worth it.
"It was very challenging," he said. "The legs would be 6 or 4 miles and I thought 'I can do that, no problem,' but when you're out there, it's harder. There the 4 miles you run, then you have to navigate, drive, and take an hour or two break before you run again. It's very challenging, but it was also very rewarding."
Getting an opportunity to run for a charity that helps fellow military members was a plus for Capt. Katie Steele, a student in the course.
"You get a real sense of accomplishment, especially coming across that finish line," she said. " You're wearing the Team Red, White and Blue T-shirt -- so people know what you're doing and who you are doing it for. You get a lot of positive feedback because you are doing something for someone you know -- I know someone who has been wounded -- so it really means something to you."
During the 200-mile relay, the officers said people would see them and ask who they were running for and Capt. Hannah Leadbetter, also a student, said talking to people on the route helped bring awareness to the support group.
"It is a great cause, and the people along the route were very interested in it," said Leadbetter. " We can talk about it all day long because we all know people, but getting it out to the public to show them how they can help was rewarding."
Team 1 consisted of Capt. Kafi Joseph, Capt. Paul Conrad, Capt. Sean Zion, Capt. Rori Chrisco-Janker, Capt. Katie Steele, Capt. Randall Moran, Capt. Jon Bender, Capt. Michael Andersen, Capt. Grant Gutkowski, Capt. Sarah Houp, Capt. Claudio Rodriguez and Capt. Whitney Hall.
Team 2 consisted of Capt. James Blackwell, Capt. Sarah Bernal, Capt. Marcus Thomas, Capt. Jessica Wong, Capt. Diana Petty, Maj. David Williams, Maj. Charles Conway, Capt. Anthony Fillippino, Capt. Samantha Pavolko, Capt. Dwayne Gist, Capt. Johnathan Wagner and Capt. Hannah Leadbetter.