Oct. 8, 2010
USAF ACADEMY, Colo. - The members of the Air Force gymnastics program are used to competing against other gymnasts, but last week the Falcons came together to compete in a bigger challenge. For the second straight year, members of the men's and women's gymnastics teams took to the streets of downtown Denver to participate in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.
The 33 members of the Falcons' gymnastics program were some of the over 50,000 participants that took part in Denver's 18th annual race on Sunday, Oct. 3. The race began at Confluence Park and continued around Invesco Field at Mile High, before concluding near the Pepsi Center.
Senior Dan Klimkowski served as the captain for the Falcons' volunteer efforts for the second straight year. Last year, he saw the project as a way to promote bonding between the men's and women's teams, while supporting a worthwhile cause. This year, the Falcons had a familiar face in their thoughts, as they walked in support of Diane, a photographer and friend of women's head coach Doug Day, who spent the week prior to undergoing a double mastectomy with the team taking photos for the upcoming season.
"Everyone was really into the race this year," Klimkowski said. "The race has become something we look forward to every year. When I started this, I had no idea that it would become a tradition. (This year) was really special, because we had the chance to come together and race for Diane. She is such a strong woman and it puts a lot in perspective."
The Falcons exceeded their goal this year, as the individual members contributed over $3,100 to the cause. The Falcons, who have surpassed $5,000 over the last two years, were listed among the top 55 on the Denver Race for the Cure's Fundraising Honor Roll for 2010.
Air Force was joined on the walk by men's head coach Kip Simons and his wife, Kim.
"I'm so proud of my guys, once again doing the right thing both on and off the field," Simons commented. "It was inspirational to be a part of such a great event. Raising over $3,000 for such a worthy cause is a testament to the quality of guys on the team."
Denver's Race for the Cure is one in a series of races that take place every year around the world. The races help raise significant funds and awareness for the fight against breast cancer, celebrate breast cancer survivorship and honor those who have lost their battle with the disease.