On Saturday Feb. 25, the City of Riverside’s Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department hosted the Riverside Raincross 5K Run/Walk for the sixth year in a row. The race started at 7:30 a.m., followed by the Kids’ Heroes run at 8:30 a.m.
Last year’s Raincross 5K Run/ Walk honored Ryan Bonaminio, a Riverside policeman who was shot and killed while on duty.
“Five dollars from every race entry registration went toward the Riverside Police Officers Association (RPOA), where they helped with the cost of Bonaminio’s death expenses,” said Megan Stoye, a city of Riverside employee.
Stoye said the RPOA donated a total of $6,845, all of which went to the fallen officers fund in honor of Bonaminio.
This year the race partnered with both veteran partner RPOA and Riverside Police Foundation (RPF), a new partner involved with the Riverside Raincross 5K Run/Walk.
RPOA and RPF paid for 300 race registration spots, so the kids of the Riverside community could run free of charge.
This year’s race honored the kidsoftheRiversidecommunity and other heroes in the Riverside community.
The Riverside Mounted Patrol showed their support atop their horses by assisting the racers and others who were in attendance. The Riverside Police Department was well represented with many officers and cadets in uniform.
There were many booths set up after the race which included local heroes like the Riverside Fire Department who shared important information on safety.
The Heroes Run started at the historic Fairmount Park in downtown Riverside. The rest of the course bordered the park alongside Fairmount Boulevard and around Lake Evans, giving runners a scenic route next to the lake.
As an honorary gesture, the finish line was located near the spot of Bonaminio’s death.
“The course was a good one,” Hank Smith, a race participant, said. “There was a nightmare hill along the way which was tough.”
Smith finished third overall in his age division of 75 and up. His age of 81 does not stop him from running.
“I have done five half marathons, and out of those five I have finished first place for my age division in two of the marathons, the Chicago Marathon and the LA Marathon.”
Smith said he was very happy with the way he raced and was ecstatic about finishing third overall for his age division.
The top finishers for males and females of each age division received awards during a ceremony after the race. All finishers of the Kids’ Heroes Run received a participation award, given at the finish.
The kids race was a 1K, but some kids 12 and under who wanted to participate in the 5K were placed in the 13-18 age division.
“Thisraceisforawonderful cause,” Smith said.
Some students shared what they personally think it means to be a hero.
“A hero should be an example and should inspire people even through the hard times they may encounter,” Bonich Meister, freshman, said.
“Being a hero seems like it is more of an act of good deeds and kindness at random moments to help those in need,” Rebecca Trupp, freshman, said.
She also added a hero is someone who has courage and strength in a difficult situation.