The Christopher Braley Wounded Warriors 5K Run/Walk is set for Sunday, May 24, as part of the Memorial Day Weekend Commemoration at Woodward Park.
Race day registration starts at 6:30 a.m. for the event sponsored by In-Shape Health Clubs. The cost for the run is $35. The race starts at 8 a.m. Entries postmarked by May 16 are only $25. Entry forms are available at www.thememorialweekend.org.
Braley was accompanying Marines on a patrol as a Navy medic in Iraq in September of 2007 when gunfire broke out when an explosive detonated, sending shrapnel into his right eye and his brain. Braley spend several months at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. It was there that President George W. Bush visited with him and his mother, Debra Braley, and presented Braley with a Purple Heart.
Braley is a 2004 Sierra High graduate and is a former basketball player for the Timberwolves.
Braley during an interview four years ago said he wished more people would take time to participate in a Memorial Day weekend event to honor all of those in the past 235 years who have laid down their lives for America and to serve and protect liberty and freedom.
“(Soldiers) are the only reason we are free in a free country and not subjects of the King of England,” Braley said, adding too many people take their freedoms and the bounty of the country for granted.
Braley said he’s proud to be part of “the one percent of Americans” who has served in the military to protect America and its freedoms.
As for others who have done the same that he has whether it was World War II or Desert Storm, Braley said “they’re my brothers.”
This year’s Memorial Weekend Commemoration opens on Thursday, May 21, at 10 a.m. with the opening of the Moving Wall. It will remain open all day and all night through Monday, May 25, at 3 p.m. when closing ceremonies will take place.
A Manteca Regional School Rally featuring the High Voltage Band takes place on Friday, May 22, at 6 p.m.
The Sunday, May 24 events include:
• A flyover of military aircraft.
• Flag raising ceremony and taps.
• A breakfast sponsored by Nulaid Eggs.
• Helicopters landings.
• The Marine Cpl. Charles O. Palmer car and motorcycle show.
• Gold Star Family Brunch.
• Kids Zone featuring bounce houses and slides, mechanical bull, laser tag, zip line, and train.
• Community memorial service for the fallen.
• The Traveling Tribute to the Fallen of the Global War on Terror along with more than 7,000 crosses representing each of those that gave their lives for America.
• Entrainment featuring the bluegrass band known as Red Dog Ash, Victorious All Stars, The Advocates, James Greer, Family, Lincoln Brewster, and Tahoe Fire Dancers.
• Aerial fireworks sponsored by Manteca Christian Preschool.