500 Support First Annual Run for Ribbons 5K
Jasmine Millwood, adoptive daughter of Plymouth Township Supervisor Richard Reaume, organized the run in Downtown Plymouth to raise awareness of child abuse.
The streets were empty in Downtown Plymouth Sunday morning – empty of cars but filled with people for the First Annual Run for Ribbons 5K.
Jasmine Millwood, 24, of Plymouth, who organized the run, cried when she saw the 5K begin.
“This is a big passion of mine,” Millwood said. “And it’s based on my own experience.”
Millwood and her sisters sustained years of abuse and neglect at the hands of their biological parents before being adopted by Plymouth Township Supervisor Richard Reaume, who is also their maternal uncle.
Millwood is executive director of Lighthouse Family Charities, which organized the event with the Plymouth Canton Junior Chamber.
“The money raised will go to buying booklets for every fifth grader in the school district,” she said.
The booklets called “It’s OK to Tell!” educate children on preventing child abuse.
Millwood said this is the first time she has organized a run and would never wish that much work on anyone.
“But I had to see it happen,” she said. “Look around. The whole town is in blue right now.”
The fountain in Kellogg Park was also dyed blue in support of child abuse awareness.
Runners, Non-runners Attend 5K
People sprinted across Main Street and west down Ann Arbor Trail at 8 a.m. to start the 5K. The run attracted families, couples, first-time runners and veteran runners.
Stacey Mundt, 34, of Plymouth, is part of Team World Vision, a group that runs to support charities.
“I was familiar with the route,” Mundt said. “And it’s a gorgeous day.”
She ran pushing a stroller with her 4-year-old son, Jack, who got out before the finish to run the last few steps.
Megan O’Leary, 27, of Canton, said she has a blog where she writes about her races.
“My sister-in-law asked if we could do a family run,” she said.
She, her brother, James O’Leary, 32 of Westland, and sister-in-law, Jillian O’Leary, 31, of Westland, were sponsored for the race by Renewal by Andersen.
The run was not only for experienced runners. Erin Kaltz, 23, of Plymouth, said it was her first run in a 5K.
“I just moved to Plymouth and thought this would be a good thing to do,” she said.
Kaltz was one of the runners wearing the most blue. She sported blue legwarmers, blue tights, blue gloves, a blue shirt and jacket and a blue headband.
5K Exceeds Expectations
“I think there were two successes today,” said Reaume. “It was a successful fitness event, and the other is that it was raising awareness for her cause.
He said Millwood organized a committee of energetic people to assist her and he came in at the end to help her recruit more runners and determine the course.
There were over 500 people including supporters, volunteers and the Salem Rockettes, who cheered the runners as they finished, Millwood said. She said there were over 400 runners in the 5K and one-mile run, which started at 7:45 a.m.
“The run definitely exceeded our expectations,” she said. “Some runs don’t get the numbers we had after years of doing it.”
She said the $4,000 raised will go to supplying the booklets, which the school board will have to approve so they can be passed out within the next two months.
“These are preventative measures and only positive things can come out of it,” she said.
Millwood said future plans include giving preventative presentations in the school district.