The first walk of many

At the 5K for TLC , ASB director, Gordon Weisenburger runs his first lap around the corner of Harriman St. on April 13. ASB students also participated with Weisenburger.

Marilyn Ramirez, Copy Editor/Co-Editor-in-Chief

The Downey Service Center’s Community Involvement Team partnered up with the City of Downey and Downey Unified School District to hold the 1st annual 5K for True Lasting Connections, on Saturday, April 15 at Rancho Los Amigos. The $15-$20 fee per person benefited the TLC Resource Center located in Downey on Lakewood and Bellflower; the community support was evident in the result of the $20,000 raised.

 

“It’s so nice to get everyone to come out today and show how tied together we are as a community,” Mayor Mario Guerra said. “Rain or shine, we will walk today together for a cause that will benefit you, the residents on Downey.”

 

Walkers, runners, babies in strollers, the young, and the old gathered at the starting line after visiting sponsors’ booths, such as Kaiser Permanente and Dasani.

 

“We want to promote good health for life so that walkers here today can continue participating at other walks not only to improve other people’s lives but their own,” Kaiser Permanente employee Shannon Garcia said.

 

Groups from Downey High School such as ASB and Kiwanis Club also joined in, cheering runners and walkers on to finish the three-mile journey. Senior Mohammed Khan was motivated by ASB Director Gordon Weisenburger, who placed in the top 50 with a time of 28:52.

 

“[The race] was fun this morning,” Khan said. “I placed top in my age group. It was nice seeing everyone there, especially my old East Middle School teachers.”

 

Unlike the speedy racers like Khan, Michelle Hernandez, 11, took her time getting through the treck. Her purpose wasn’t to place, but to promote TLC’s progress.

 

“I think what they’re doing here is great and everyone should know about it,” Hernandez said.

 

True Lasting Connections has become more than just a resource center over the past 20 years of its existence. In Downey, it has shaped the city into becoming more of a community involved through the programs it offers at little to no cost with the help of grants and donations from beneficiaries.