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Memorial Day Road Race benefits military families

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Thousands of early risers were out along the lakefront Saturday for the 10th annual Memorial Day Road Race honoring fallen veterans.

Traditionally, the race, which started at Chicago's Soldier Field, is held Memorial Day weekend.

Approximately 15,000 runners participated this year with benefits going to Salute, Inc., a Chicago-area non-profit organization that helps military members and their families.

"We have helped over 1,500 families in the last 10 years raise a couple million dollars, and we are continuing and need more help and volunteers an advocacy than ever," said Mary Beth Beiersdorf, founder of Salute.

"Memorial weekend is a special weekend and being at the largest war memorial in the state of Illinois, a building that was built in 1924 dedicated to the men and women who lost their lives during World War I, it is a time of remembrance but also a time of freedom. And I'm not surprised that people want to express their freedom on this weekend," said David Zimmer, president of Fleet Feet Sports, which helped organize the race.

The race ended on the 50 yard line at Chicago's Soldier Field.

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