The inaugural Flower Mound Veterans Day Relay got off to a chilly start Tuesday morning a few minutes after 7 am at the corner of Sandy Lane and Heritage in Lakeside DFW.
But no one was complaining.
Twenty runners — comprised of Flower Mound residents and veterans — honored and celebrated our country’s veterans by carrying the flag approximately three miles each on the 60-plus-mile trek (four times around a 15-mile circuit) for a total of around 12 hours.
The final participant, a disabled veteran of the war in Afghanistan, an amputee named Jake Murphy rolled to the finish line in Lakeside around 6 pm.
Murphy’s presence sent chills through many of those watching.
“The idea was to keep our flag going and waving through town from sunrise to sunset,” said John Scully, who was selected by town officials to organize the event.
Scully’s selection as lead organizer resulted from his history of carrying the Stars and Stripes since 2001.“Back then, I was set to run a half marathon in Philadelphia,” Scully told Saul Garza of KDFW Fox4 News minutes before the start of the relay. “I wanted to do something to honor the victims of 9/11. My dad suggested I carry the flag.”
At the relay’s conclusion, participants and organizers gathered at the Normandy Homes model home at 609 Sandy Lane in Lakeside DFW to visit with one another, snack, and unwind.
All involved felt a sense of the special purpose of the event.
“Personally, I come from a military family,” said Brandy Parker, marketing manager for Normandy Homes. “My Dad and both grandparents served, so this was very meaningful to me.”
The Town of Flower Mound, Luke’s Locker, Normandy Homes, and the Lakeside DFW Owners Association served as event sponsors.