By Air National Guard Master Sgt. Leisa Grant
National Guard Bureau
LINCOLN, Neb. (5/8/12) – Runners from throughout the Army and Air National Guard took part in the 35th Annual Lincoln National Guard Marathon and Half-Marathon Sunday in order to earn spots on the 2012-1013 All Guard Marathon Team.
A total of 216 Army and Air National Guard runners from 44 states and two territories competed for one of 55 slots on the marathon team.
With a second consecutive win here, Army Capt. Robert Killian of the Colorado Army Guard came in with a time of 2:37:35 and Army Capt. Sara Day of the North Carolina Army Guard was the top Guard female runner with a time of 3:02:22.
All who tried out put forth a top effort.
“There wasn’t a runner out there who didn’t give 150 percent,” said Army Sgt. 1st Class Mike Hagen, the All Guard Marathon Team coordinator.
Runners faced many challenges along the route, including the weather.
With an original weather forecast for temperatures in the 90s and potential rain, runners were spared a wet race start and were afforded cooler temperatures throughout the day. While the start of the race was mostly dry, the heat and humidity set in later on.
Before the race, Command Sgt. Maj. Richard Burch, sergeant major of the Army National Guard, anticipated the conditions might be challenging, rain or shine, but he encouraged the runners to give it their all.
“You have to dig deep and stay committed,” he said. “Always place the mission first. This marathon is your mission right now. Never accept defeat. And never quit.”
About 15 new runners qualified for the team this year.
“The new team members will bring talent and experience on a competitive and professional level,” Hagen said, adding that this year’s team is a good mix of Army and Air Guard members.
To make the team, runners had to run the full marathon — 26.2 miles. Army Maj. Gen. Timothy Kadavy, deputy director of the Army National Guard, asked runners not to focus on that number, but rather on the number .007.
“This is the number of men and women serving in uniform,” he said. “Seven tenths of 1 percent represent the best of America.”
Of this small percent, an even smaller number are distance runners.
“Your presence here at this marathon is a testament to your commitment,” Burch said. “That kind of commitment is what makes us professional Soldiers and Airmen.”
Members of the 2012-1013 All Guard Marathon Team include:
Army Sgt. Courtney Webb, Florida
Army Maj. Michelle Kiluk, Rhode Island
Army Capt. Kelly Leugers, Ohio
Air Force Staff. Sgt. Kristen Roles, West Virginia
Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Mei Van Gentry, Pennsylvania
Army Spc. Rachel Walter, Maryland
Army Cadet Kristen Conley, Maine
Army Sgt. Rebecca Linder, South Dakota
Air Force Tech. Sgt. Kristine Laughlin-Hall, Alaska
Air Force Tech. Sgt. Sarah Bredthauer, Nebraska
Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Lisa Buckley, Texas
Army Maj. Deanne Drauba, Utah
Air Force Airman 1st Class Emily Shertzer, Pennsylvania
Army Capt. Sara Day, North Carolina
Army Warrant Officer 1 Darrick Coriz, New Mexico
Army Capt. Aaron Bratka, Ohio
Army Maj. James Proctor, Washington
Air Force Lt. Col. Jesse Arnstein, New Jersey
Air Force Tech. Sgt. Nathaniel Bartnick, New Mexico
Air Force Master Sgt. Michael White, Washington
Army Sgt. 1st Class Trent Sinnett, Illinois
Army Staff Sgt. Michael Embury, Kentucky
Army Staff Sgt. Matthew Stern, Pennsylvania
Air Force Col. Troy Frost, Montana
Air Force Master Sgt. Eric Jones, Tennessee
Air Force 1st Lt. Mark Traeger, Illinois
Army Sgt. Valentine Roberts, Hawaii
Army 1st Lt. Toby Angove, Pennsylvania
Army Sgt. Eric Brown, Indiana
Army Sgt. 1st Class Michael Streff, South Dakota
Army Sgt. Teale Marchette, Georgia
Army Maj. Michael Kjar, Utah
Army 1st Lt. Nicholas Plocar, Wisconsin
Army Spc. Chris Sinnett, Indiana
Army Capt. Jerod Tufte, North Dakota
Air Force Staff Sgt. James Munnis III, West Virginia
Army Staff Sgt. Jason Kirch, Wisconsin
Air Force Lt. Col. Joseph Reed, Arkansas
Army 1st Lt. Vikram Mittal, Massachusetts
Army Spc. Wilfredo Turell, Puerto Rico
Army Staff Sgt. Daniel Kysela, Pennsylvania
Army Lt. Col. Jeff Olive, Georgia
Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Chase Duarte, Arizona
Army Capt. Seth Kaste, Wisconsin
Army Maj. James Thompson, Washington
Army Staff Sgt. Mark Jones, Pennsylvania
Army Spc. Aaron Edwards, Ohio
Air Force Airman 1st Class Robert Miles, Wisconsin
Army Sgt. 1st Class Tim Vandervlugt, Oregon
Army Master Sgt. Seven Richmond, Oregon
Air Force Maj. Michael Western, Wisconsin
Army Sgt. 1st Class James Bresette, Arkansas
Army Staff Sgt. Troy Harrison, Pennsylvania
Army Capt. Robert Killian, Colorado