Nonprofit to honor military heroes with Niles Memorial Day 5K

Published 12:11 pm Thursday, May 25, 2023

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NILES — A local nonprofit is aiming to bring the community together with its Memorial Day event.

Niles nonprofit Remarkable Inc. and wear blue: run to remember, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to honoring fallen service members through active remembrance, have teamed up to bring a free Memorial Day 5K run/walk to Niles. A nationwide endeavor, the Niles event is the only Michigan location.

The race starts at 8 a.m. at the Riverside Park Veterans Memorial at 220 S. Front St. and will take place before the scheduled Memorial Day parade. Participants will be provided with the name of a fallen service member who has given his or her life since the first days of the Vietnam War. 

“Together, we ensure the enduring remembrance of these over 65,000 fallen service members, as we learn their stories, speak their names, and honor their legacies,” reads a statement from its website.

The event is organized by Remarkable Inc. President Melanie Kennedy, whose husband is a Marine Corps veteran. Kennedy said she was contacted by wear blue about organizing a race in Niles.

“We were looking for a better outlet to honor those that he served on Memorial Day Weekend,” she said. “I had received an email from this organization and figured I’d follow through. They’re really great to work with.”

Kennedy said the early feedback she has received has been positive and is hoping for a strong turnout.

“It’s not a typical run,” she said. “You don’t have to pay. You’re honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice. I think it’s really unique and special and it honors Memorial Day as it should be.” 

Those interested in participating can register online for free at