Each year, a 5-kilometer race is held at St. Francis Prep in Queens to raise scholarship money and honor alumni who lost their lives on Sept. 11, 2001.
My uncle, FDNY Capt. Vincent Francis Giammona, is one of the brave alumni who are remembered. Before the 5k race begins, kids participate in a fun run and are given a red, white and blue medal with winged sneakers. Immediately after the fun run, anxious 5k participants line up.
My grandfather, FDNY Capt. Vincent Michael Giammona, has been given the honor of blowing the starting line whistle since the first race. All participants proudly finish whether they beat their personal best or walked. After all the runners have crossed the finish line, participants gather in the cafeteria for a post-race breakfast celebration and the chance to win raffle prizes. Winners of each division in the 5k are called up and happily collect their trophies.
Finally, raffle winners select a prize from items including St. Francis Prep merchandise. This race is a wonderful way for St. Francis Prep to raise money, as well as honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their beloved country.
The annual 5k Fun Run Honoring Our 9/11 Heroes is at 9 a.m. on Oct. 22, St. Francis Preparatory School, 6100 Francis Lewis Blvd., Fresh Meadows. Registration is available the morning of the event.