2nd Annual James W. Foley Freedom Run Takes Off in Commemoration of Slain NH Journalist

At 10am on Saturday, October 15th, runners, walkers, and joggers took their marks at the starting line of the the second annual James W. Foley Freedom Run.  The event, which took place at the Rochester Fairgrounds in Rochester, N.H., was organized by the James Foley Legacy Foundation in commemoration of NH journalist Jim Foley, who was murdered by ISIS in 2014.

“James W. Foley was a courageous young journalist who dedicated his life to caring for others through freedom of speech and democracy,” the James Foley Legacy Foundation said in a statement. “He reported on injustices from across the globe, including some of the most dangerous. After two years in captivity in Syria, James was murdered by ISIS terrorists in 2014.”

James Foley, Aleppo, Syria - 07/12. Photo: Nicole Tung. Authorized use: alongside article on James Foley's kidnapping in Syria only.

James Foley in Aleppo, Syria. Photo: Nicole Tung.

The event’s coordinators estimate a turn out of over 4,000 runners, both on-site and across the globe through the organization’s ‘virtual run,’ which allowed those unable to participate in the main event to do so, virtually. On the day of the race, participants of the virtual run were encouraged to share a photo social media along with hashtag #IRunForJim to raise support and awareness.

The race, which was voted New Hampshire’s Best New Race in 2015, traveled through downtown Rochester and offered participants and spectators food, beverages, on-site entertainment, and raffle prizes courtesy of local sponsors. This year’s main event was followed by a Kid’s Run for children age 8 and below.

Local sponsors include: Frisbie Memorial Hospital, Skechers, Cressa, Access Sports Medicine, Drummond Woodsum, Wentworth Douglass Hospital, CMC, Bernier Insurance, Tufts Freedom Health Plan, Safran, Albany International, Holy Rosary Credit Union, Alliance Dental Care, Turbocam, Revolution Taproom and Grill & Lilac City Pediatrics.

According to the foundation, proceeds raised through the James W. Foley Freedom Run will Foley Freedom Run will go directly to the James W. Foley Legacy Foundation, whose mission is to “advocate for the safe return of American hostages kidnapped abroad; protect press freedom and freelance conflict journalists; and educate journalism students on the dangers of conflict journalism and protection.”

For more information about the James W. Foley Legacy Foundation, please visit: jamesfoleyfoundation.org or follow them at @JamesFoleyFund on Facebook and Twitter.

Photos from https://www.facebook.com/FoleyRun.

Katelyn Byers is a freelance writer and Spare Change News contributor.

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