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5k kicks off day full of activities at Woodward Park
Wounded Global War on Terror veteran Derek McGinnis, author of Exit Wounds: A Survival Guide for Pain Management for Returning veterans & Their Families, competed in last years Wounded Warrior Run during the Memorial Day Weekend commemorative event at Woodward Park on May 27. - photo by HIME ROMERO

• SPECIAL SECTION: The Manteca Bulletin is publishing a tribute to those who have served our country on Saturday, May 27. Readers who have either served in war or peace or who have loved ones or friends who have are invited to submit information on the men and women who have served America as well as any photos so the sacrifices they made can be shared with the community. You can send the information to with Serving America in the subject line or drop it by the Manteca Bulletin, 531 E. Yosemite Ave., Manteca, CA, 95336. The deadline is 5 p.m. on Tuesday, May 22.

The Wounded Warrior Christopher Braley is a run unlike any other run.

Among the entries in the 2011 Memorial Day Weekend Not Forgotten event was wounded Navy Corpsman Derek McGinnis of Modesto. The Manteca event is the largest Memorial Day weekend commemoration on the West Coast. Last year some 15,000 people attended the event.

The Iraq war veteran ran even though most of his left leg is missing. McGinnis, who served as a hospital corpsman for 11 years in the Navy, was severely wounded in Fallujah sustaining a traumatic brain injury and an above knee amputation of his left leg for which he underwent extensive treatment and rehabilitation at military and Veterans Affairs medical facilities.

The run is named after one of McGinnis’ fellow Navy corpsmen. Manteca resident Christopher Braley was also attached to a Marine unit in Iraq. In September of 2007 an explosive detonated in a fire fight sending shrapnel into his right eye and brain.

This year’s run/walk starts off the Memorial Day Weekend events on Saturday, May 27, at Woodward Park at 8 a.m. with race day registration starting at 6:30 p.m.

The race is expected to have a number of veterans entered as well as other running enthusiasts.

The entry fee is $25 before May 21 and $35 afterwards for the event sponsored by 24 Hour Fitness of Manteca. More information on the run is available by going to .

Among the major events planned for the Saturday, May 27, at Woodward Park are:

• The Marine Cpl. Charles O. Palmer II Memorial Car Show with nearly 500 pre-registrants.

• An omelet breakfast sponsored by NuLaid Eggs of Ripon.

• Vietnam helicopter landing.

• A community memorial service with Vietnam veteran Chris Lambert and the “We are Family” choir out of Mi-wik Village.

• A free kids energy play zone.

• USO Show-style entertainment featuring regional bands

• A community entertainment stage.

• The dedication of the 11th panel on the Traveling Tribute to those who have died to date in The Global War on terror.

• A ceremony honoring all who have served in the Armed Forces of the United States.

• The Air Force Rock/Pop Band “Mobility” in concert.

• Aerial fireworks celebrating the safe return home of veterans.

• Static military displays.

• An Air Force C-17 Globemaster flyover. It flies slow (100 knots) at 800 feet the first pass and 250 knots, 1,500 feet on the second pass.