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BUFFALO, NEW YORK: October 10, 2007-The ECMC Lifeline Foundation will hold its eleventh annual 5K Run & Healthwalk fundraiser in Delaware Park, Buffalo, on Saturday, October 20, 2007. 

This year, event honorees to be recognized are: Buffalo Police Officers Patricia Parete, Buffalo Police Officer Carl Andolina and Buffalo Firefighter Mark Reed.  Returning 5K Run & Healthwalk law enforcement honorees and run competitors for 2007, are Lockport Police Officer Steven D. Ritchie, Lockport Police Captain Lawrence M. Eggert, and Jamestown Police Detective David Mitchell. 

On December 5, 2006, Buffalo Police Officer Patricia Parete and her partner Officer Carl Andolina were dispatched to a downtown gas station where a fight had been reported.  The officers chased a suspect and ordered him to take his hands out of his pockets when he then began shooting at both officers at point blank range.  Officer Andolina tackled him to the ground.  Both officers were injured in the gun battle, with Officer Parete sustaining severe injuries from a gunshot to the spine.  Officer Andolina was shot three times, treated at ECMC, and discharged on December 7, 2007.  Officer Parete underwent extensive emergency/trauma surgery and care at ECMC and remains in rehabilitation elsewhere. 

Buffalo Firefighter Mark Reed was transported to ECMC on June 10, 2007, after a brick chimney collapsed on him while fighting an arson fire in a vacant house in the City.  Reed arrived at ECMC with multiple, life-threatening injuries.  Yet, after undergoing multiple surgeries and extensive care, Reed was discharged from ECMC on August 1, 2007. 

Captain Lawrence Eggert and Officer Steven Ritchie were injured in the line of duty in February of 2003, during a gun battle with a man they pursued for shooting a Lockport bar patron and riddling a building with bullets with a semi-automatic weapon.  Both officers were injured and treated by ECMC emergency/trauma teams.  Ritchie was brought to ECMC in critical condition.  This year, as returning honorees, both Ritchie (for fourth consecutive year) and Eggert (for fifth consecutive year) will be competing in the 5K event. 

In September of 1999, after sustaining life-threatening injuries when shot in the line of duty, Mitchell was transported to ECMC for emergency, trauma, and follow-up care.   Jamestown Police Detective David Mitchell will participate once again in the run as a returning honoree (for the eighth consecutive year). 

5K Run & Healthwalk competitions include the competitive run as well as a race-walk.  Race-day registration will be held just prior to the event, from 8:30 A.M. to 9:45 A.M., in the Delaware Park Parkside Lodge.  The healthwalk will begin at 10:00 A.M., and the run (including the race-walk) will begin at 10:30 A.M.  The early entrance fee for adults is $20 each for those who register by Friday, October 19, 2007.  The adult entry fee for those who register on "race-day" is $22 per person.  The entry fee for children (under age 12) is $5 each.  The fee includes registration, a long sleeve T-shirt for all runners and walkers over age 12, food and refreshments, and opportunities to win door prizes at the post-run picnic to be held in an area in and around a large tent adjacent to the Delaware Park Parkside Lodge. 

The course is USA Track & Field certified and designated as a "South Buffalo Athletic Association/Runner's Roost Runner of the Year Series" event.  Prizes for the run will include overall female and male winners, as well as the first three male and female winners in each of 16 age groups.  There will be a special prize for anyone breaking the Buffalo, NY 5K Run record. 

Special prize drawings will take place for: those runners/walkers who generate a minimum of $50 in sponsorships, team prizes for best costume or theme, most enthusiastic, and largest team.  Children in strollers are welcome and everyone is encouraged to wear Halloween costumes. 

To register, or for more information, call the ECMC Lifeline Foundation at 716-898-5800. 

The mission of the ECMC Lifeline Foundation, an independent, not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) corporation, is to assist Erie County Medical Center Corporation in procuring the resources needed to become Western New York's Hospital of Choice through excellence in patient care and customer service. 

NEWS CONTACT:  Joe Cirillo: 716-898-4300


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