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Augusta Prep students organize 5K race for a cause

Posted: February 19, 2012 - 12:10am

Augusta Prep students are coming together to run for a cause with the Running for Justice/Natalee Holloway 5K at 10 a.m. Saturday.

The race, to be run on Augusta Prep’s cross country trail, is the brainchild of cross country runners Maggie McCloud and junior Amanda Murphy.

“Over the summer, Amanda and I thought we should do a race and raise money, and it hit me one day,” said McCloud, who is a senior at Augusta Prep. “We talked to Coach (Tom) Holodak ... and he was all for it.”.

In May 2005, Holloway was on a five-day post-graduation trip to Aruba with classmates from Mountain Brook High School in Birmingham, Ala. She disappeared and was presumed dead, but her body was never found. In January, an Alabama judge declared her legally dead.

McCloud watched media coverage of the police investigation with her mother that summer in Alabama and it stuck with her.

“We want to raise awareness of international travel, because we’re at the age where we love to travel abroad,” McCloud said. “We want people to know what to do and avoid what happened to Natalee.”

The cost of the race is $20. All proceeds benefit to the Natalee Holloway Resource Center (NHRC).

Holloway’s mother, Beth, and the National Museum of Crime and Punishment partnered to form the NHRC in June 2010. The organization focuses on educational programs and includes a traveling safe program. It also provides assistance to families of missing persons. The site is at www.crimemuseum.org.

McCloud contacted Beth Holloway through the NHRC, and she plans to compete in the race and is scheduled to speak to upper school students Friday afternoon.

“She might say a few words before the race, but she’s just here to run,” McCloud said.

Putting the race together gave McCloud an appreciation for what others have done to coordinate races she has run.

“It’s a lot more work than I thought,” she said. “There’s a lot of little things in a race you wouldn’t think of. We’ve had a lot of help.”

McCloud and Murphy, a junior, enlisted friends for support. They put up posters to advertise the race, created registration forms and waivers, and set up a Web site for online registration.

To register, go to http://www.active.com/register/index.cfm?CHECKSSO=0&EVENT_ID=1999094. There will also be on-site registration on race day.

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