By Capt. Conoly SullivanApril 22, 2017
FORT GORDON, Ga. -- The 513th Military Intelligence Brigade (Theater) Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP) Office hosted its first Color Run at Barton Field in recognition of the U.S. Army's Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, April 22.
About 100 513th Soldiers, Civilians and Family Members preregistered for the awareness-raising event, but on run day over 230 came from across Fort Gordon to participate. Many of these additional runners were Advanced Individual Training students currently enrolled in class on the installation.
"I am so pleased with the awesome turnout we have here this morning to raise awareness of sexual assault and harassment to our team members and their families," said Lt. Col. John Ives, 513th MI BDE (T) operations officer in charge.
The participants ran five kilometers around the Barton Field track. As participants ran by, volunteers threw teal and purple colored chalk on each runner, representing Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence awareness respectively.
"This was a healthy and fun way to bring our team together. I want to thank all the volunteers who participated in this event, and all the runners who came out to support such an important cause," said Sgt. 1st Class Eric Ives, 513th MI BDE (T) sexual assault response coordinator.
At the end of the race three runners were awarded prizes. Pvt. Josh Zornes of A Co. 551st Signal Battalion won for the adult most covered in colored chalk, Ms. Lilly LeClerc, daughter of the 297th Military Intelligence Battalion Commander, Lt. Col. Bryan LeClerc, won for most colorful child and Pvt. Mariah Burke of A Co. 551st Signal Battalion won for most spirited runner.
"Everyone who participated is a winner for taking the time to learn more about SHARP, and I am proud of each and every one of you who came out today," concluded Sgt. 1st Class Nicole Ratchford 513th MI BDE (T) victim advocate.
Based on the positive feedback from all participants in raising individual awareness of sexual assault and domestic violence issues, the Brigade has started planning for a similar event next year.
Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month events were conducted throughout the month of April within units across Fort Gordon.
Garrison hosted a variety of these events to ensure every Soldier knows the importance of Sexual Assault prevention and where to go if they need help or more information.