By Staff Sgt. Luke KoladishOctober 13, 2009
BAGHDAD-Nearly 1000 Servicemembers and civilians gathered around the Victory Stage, Camp Victory, to run the Army 10-miler, Oct. 4, hours before it was run in D.C. At approximately 6 a.m. in Baghdad the runners took off as the first rays of from the sun made their way over concrete barriers. Robert Sekitto, a Ugandan contractor, quickly made his way to the front of the pack and stayed there for the rest of the race. The runner's were cheered by fellow Servicemembers and civilians, handed cups of water by volunteers and motivated by the music of the 56th Army Band, Multi-National Corps-Iraq. Sekitto crossed the finish line at 56 minutes, 41 seconds and was followed by the first place female ten minutes later. Chief Warrant Officer Olga Elliott, Multi-National Corps-Iraq, Fort Lewis, Wash., completed 10 miles in 1:07:22 sporting a white "Fort Lewis Ten-miler Team" T-shirt. "I was running in honor of the Fort Lewis team in the rear and the folks that are deployed," Elliott said after the race. For some, like Sgt. Ryan Baldry, 143rd Military Police Detachment, Montana National Guard, it was the first time he had run more than six miles. "It was the worst decisions I've made so far," Baldry said with a smile at the finish line. He finished in an hour and 16 minutes. Elliott encouraged those training for longer distances to keep going and never quit.