On Thursday night, the track at Emery High School will be packed with people who normally wouldn’t lace up for a 5K or one-mile race. Their love for Emery High Track coach Darrell Gardner is enough to bring out those hoping to honor him with one last run.
In an effort to honor the man who made running fun and raise money for his family, organizers will host “The Last Run for Coach Gardner” at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 10. There are a lot of ways to show support and be involved, as well as get a work out. There will be a 5k run, 1 mile run, 1 mile walk. T-shirts and other items will be sold with proceeds going to his family.
The tributes to him on the facebook page In Loving Memory of Coach Gardner – EHS – give insight into why he’s so beloved. They show just how much a good coach can influence lives, far beyond sports, and why running really is good for the soul.
Here are a couple of posts:
Corey S. Price – I was always one of the kids screwing around in class and trying to flunk. I remember coach Gardner wouldn’t give up on me and it actually led to my graduation. Though only a mere year of my life was spent in class, I can tell you that he will be missed. I’m happy for coach Gardner, because he can look back on life and know that he was a good man and community member. My blessing to his family in this time of need. You will be missed and remembered coach, thank you for all you did.
Shannon Player-Timmons – I couldn’t make it to the funeral…but I did run a few miles in your honor – something I have not done in a very long time.
Caitlin Hansen — You “got er did” Gardner. Thanks for everything you taught me while I was in school and not giving up on me when I was ready to give up on myself. You will be greatly missed by all who knew you.
If you’re looking for an emotional boost, some inspiration and a way to help someone else, consider running for Coach Gardner Thursday night at Emery High. If you cannot run, but want to donate, there is an account set up in his name at Zions Bank. (And then you can run a mile where ever you are to honor a man who dedicated his life to helping others.)