University News

Nov. 7 Fallen Soldiers 5K Moves to Virtual Format

September 15, 2020

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MACOMB, IL – The ninth annual Western Illinois University Fallen Soldiers 5K Run/Walk will be held Saturday, Nov. 7, but this year's event will be completed in a virtual format because of the restrictions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Runners and walkers will complete the 5K on their own and the race will be timed using an app. Winners will be announced virtually.

Each participant will be mailed a moisture-wicking t-shirt and a finisher medal. There will be a live-streamed pre-race ceremony at 8:30 a.m. Nov. 7.

Registration is $35 for the public and $10 for WIU students and can be completed at

The Fallen Soldiers 5K Run/Walk began in 2012 to honor members of the armed forces, along with two fallen alumni soldiers from WIU, Capt. Derek Dobogai and Lt. Col. Robert Baldwin. Since the inception, the run/walk has raised nearly $120,000 for the WIU Fallen Soldiers' Scholarship Fund, which has already awarded 34 scholarships to students.

Dobogai, who graduated from Western in 2003 with a bachelor's degree in law enforcement and justice administration, was among the 14 U.S. soldiers aboard a Black Hawk helicopter that crashed Aug. 22, 2007 in northern Iraq.

Baldwin, who earned a bachelor's degree in industrial technology from WIU in 1993, was killed Sept. 21, 2010, when his Blackhawk UH-60 helicopter carrying international troops crashed during combat operations in the Zabul province of Afghanistan.

The WIU 5K has been the largest race in McDonough County each year, with about 500 annual participants.
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