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Memorial run, street renaming to honor memory of retired police chief

Published: August 14, 2016 12:00 AM
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The Chief Louis A. Dirker Jr. Memorial 5K will take place Aug. 20 beginning at Stow City Hall, 3760 Darrow Road.

Mr. Dirker served as Cuyahoga Falls' police chief from 1999 to 2001 before leading Stow's department from 2003 to 2014.

Mr. Dirker died in February of this year at the age of 67, after battling lymphoma for nearly seven years.

The event is to raise awareness and donations for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, with all proceeds benefiting LLS. The world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer, the LLS mission is to cure leukemia, Hodgkin's and Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and myeloma, as well as improving the quality of life of patients and their families.

In addition to the 5K, there will be a 1-Mile Fun Run/Walk that will take place around the city complex.

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Also taking place that day will be the unveiling of the new signs designating the renaming of City Center Boulevard, which runs in a curve between Graham and Darrow roads and provides access to the City Center complex, to Louis A. Dirker Jr. Boulevard. The ceremony will take place prior to the start of the race.

The 5K will start at 9 a.m., followed by the fun run/walk at about 9:10. Race day registration will be available from 7:45 to 8:30 that morning.

The 5K route is a certified course and will be chip timed by Runiversity, which will also provide music at the event.

Runners will begin/end the race by running under a giant American flag suspended from Stow fire trucks, the same as during his funeral procession.

All registrants will receive an official Memorial Run T-shirt. There will be finish line goodies, a race photo to all runners and a chance at prizes and awards for the 5K runners. Awards will be given to racers by age group categories.

The three top male and female finalists in each age category will receive a medal with the name of the memorial run and the saying, "Blessed are the Peacemakers. " A limited amount of commemorative medals will also be available to purchase, with proceeds going to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

The cost is $30 for the 5K and $20 for the 1-Mile Fun Run/Walk. A 25 percent discount is available for families with four or more registrations.

To register, to make a donation or for more information, visit www.ladjr5k.com, the Facebook page, Chief Louis A. Dirker Jr Memorial 5k or contact April Dirker at LADMEMORIAL@gmail.com.

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