ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. -- Three Army Contracting Command-Rock Island Sustainment Division employees participated in the second annual Rescue Run, held in Aledo, Ill., on April 19.

Contracting Officer Tracey DuBord and Contract Specialists Maj. Jade Miller and Matthew Ward joined approximately 230 other people on a chilly 40-degree morning to navigate through seven miles worth of muddy obstacles.

The course featured more than 20 obstacles, including wires with electricity flowing through them, a "slip and slide" down a large hill, and a climbing wall. DuBord and Miller said their least favorite obstacle was the ice water tanks -- two tanks measuring about 10 feet long and four feet deep located approximately five miles in on the course.

"Each of the tanks had a board across the center that required you to submerge to get under it," said Miller. "They were filled to the brim with frigid water, and a lot of ice."

DuBord said getting out of one tank only to willingly jump into the next tank was her biggest challenge with that obstacle. Miller said leaving the second tank only to have to run two more miles was his biggest challenge.

All said that they did minimal training for the event, and were relatively happy with their results. Miller and Ward have already decided they want to participate in next year's event, and said they will use their results from this year as a benchmark to beat next year.

"I think for next year, I will do more off-road type training with hills, because I wasn't totally ready for those," said Ward.

DuBord said she will consider participating again next year. She said despite how filthy she and all of the other runners were, the event was fun and of great benefit to two local communities.

The proceeds from the Rescue Run go to the Mercer County Volunteer Fire Departments. This year, the funds will provide for new equipment purchases for the Seaton, Ill., Volunteer Fire Department and the Aledo, Ill., Fire Protection District. Miller said he heard that the event raised approximately $10,000 for each department.

"It's nice to be able to do something that supports these volunteers who give up their time to keep the community safe," said Miller. "Getting to see [the firefighters] along the course having fun torturing us was an added bonus. They were out there with those trucks spraying us down the whole time with ice cold water, and looked like they were loving it."