Ft Benning Atheists Run For Heroes

by Alexandra Meehan

RUN FOR THE HEROS was running high on Jesus this last Memorial Day weekend. The run may have advertised itself as “using our love of running to help this worthy cause,” and described itself as, “new, fresh and interesting.” The 260-mile run across Georgia was spread over a span of five days. Run participants included trained athletes; mostly military personnel (with some civilians), and of course, began with a typical Christian prayer.

Sponsored by the House of Heroes, the proceeds of the race will provide assistance to military veterans and public safety through much-needed improvements and maintenance to their homes. The race began In Savannah, Georgia and concluded in Columbus, Georgia at Ft Benning.

MAAF has previously reached out to try and support trainees with alternatives to church. Unfortunately, requests for simple meetings with training leaders have been refused. Despite Ft Benning’s lack of interest in “branching out” to incorporate diverse beliefs, MAAF members/supporters still ran for the cause. Team “Cobra” took 13th place out of 28 teams and finished in 39 hours at approximately 9:04 PM. The team was composed of Brandon Griffis, Erik Burrill, Gerald Mullins, Jeremy Delany, Shawn Broe, Jose Pinto and supporting non-atheist member, Douglas Beck.

A bit of Christianity to start the race didn’t discourage the largely-atheist team. Regarding the pre-run prayer, Drill Sergeant and MAAF-member Brandon Griffis had this to say:

Even though I didn’t agree with the pre-run prayer, I had no problem waiting while they did the prayer. We had a religious member on our team, and it was a private event. It all went to a good cause.

Morning prayer at the run with Team Cobra standing tall.

Morning prayer at the run with Team Cobra standing tall.

Whether or not you believe that the good, “Almighty Lord” is responsible for our soldier’s fitness and athletics, the Run for Heroes raised $162,372, well over the $100,000 goal.

Congratulations Team Cobra!

Editors note: Please note the article and quotes state that prayer did not improve the event, the prayer is absolutely legal and acceptable at this private event and the charitable purpose was admirably served in such a large fundraiser for a great organization. All opinions expressed are entirely personal and do not reflect HOH or any DoD element. 


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