BY JERRY NOLAN
PENNSAUKEN, NJ--Cooper River Park Stadium provided the venue for the sixth annual Bill Kile Memorial Run, held on July 27. The USATF-certified course looped around the Cooper River and finished on the stadium track. To add to the local festivities was a national rowing regatta taking place on the river at the same time. A total of 111 finished the race.
Johnny Marino, 41, of Doylestown, PA, traveled the four-mile course in 20:50, to take overall race honors. Following him in second and third place, respectively, was Daniel Deichert, age 17, of Gibbsboro, NJ, (21:26) and Paul McCarty, age 24, of Marlton, NJ (21:55). Chuck Crabb holds the course record of 20:06 which he set in the 1997 inaugural race.
Finishing seventh overall in a record-breaking run was Erin Donohue, age 19, of Haddonfield, NJ. Her time of 23:18 bettered the existing women's record of 24:26, set by Doreen McCoubrie, also in the 1997 race. Donohue, who was an outstanding runner at Haddonfield High School, now runs track and cross-country for North Carolina University. Mary Beth Redheffer, age 21, of Medford Lakes, NJ (26:27) and Jacci Claus, age 16, of Medford, NJ (27:10) were the second and third women to finish, respectively.
Bill Kile, Jr., who was a runner and an educator, was well known in the New Jersey running community. Bill also was a good friend of Browning Ross. Browning was inducted into the National Distance Running Hall of Fame only two weeks before the race. Kile, Jr., was also the editor of a runner's newsletter called Runner's Club Newsletter. His son, Bill Kile III, who is the BKMR race director, has continued to publish that newsletter. A special edition was distributed on race day. Proceeds from the race go to the William H. Kile, Jr. Scholarship Fund, which provides scholarship money to students from Pennsauken High School and Howard Phifer Middle School graduates. In June, five students were awarded scholarship money. Local businesses also help with contributions to the Fund.
I knew Bill Kile, Jr., very well and ran in many races with him. I also ran in the first five BKMR runs and was registered to run this year. Unfortunately, I had a run-in with a car and ended up in a full leg cast. Bill Kile III (The Kid) invited me to come to the race as the official starter. Thanks for the honor, Bill.