Upon arrival it was clear "our boys" were ready, determined, and wanted to do it as a team. They walked around the meeting/registration space together, went outside together, and made sure to always look out to not leave anyone behind.
Outside they met up with another Let Me Run group from a neighboring school and did a unity lap and some stretching. They were attracting quite a crowd and many people were asking and talking to "our boys" like they were part of a rock band.
Then the 9 o'clock hour came and a horn sounded. They ran about 100 yards and realized the race route was not ready, we stopped... This has never happened before, but "our boys" took it in stride. They all walked back to the start line and did it again. This was a sign of what was to come.
For the next hour and about 15 minutes, determination turned into effort and sweat. Each boy travelled at different paces, each was sure to go back to pull the next in. This repeated over and over as some boys finished the race multiple times with each team mate. As the group grew, so did the cheers for the next one increase. The way in which the finish line was situated did not allow them to see around a corner of a church and therefore the time to prepare for the next finisher was minimal. They compensated at times by running down the driveway and around the corner to find the next team mate. They ran them in, they yelled at them to keep going, they even pushed them a little when needed. In the picture below the ones with the medals are the ones that already finished.
I also saw 12 boys that I could not be more proud of and excited to be able to say I know and interact with on a regular basis. They did us (#cddolphins) proud, they did themselves something so much more. They did each other an experience they will probably never forget or even appreciate themselves. I saw it, hard to describe it, but when it hit me, I knew I felt it.
Oh, how could I forget. For a couple of the boys that did not go home right after the race with their parents, one father was nice enough to buy some smoothies, coffee less Frappuccino, and other drinks from Starbucks on the way back. Our bus driver did not mind the detour! What else do you do after a 5k....?
Video put together by Coach Burke below documenting the season -