By CYNTHIA BIDDLECOMB
Among those preparing for the Los Alamos CROP Hunger Walk and Turkey Trot at 2 p.m. Sunday at Los Alamos Middle School (LAMS), are Ted Williams and Vincent Chiravalle.
Each of these gentlemen has committed energy to help this great community effort succeed. Williams has been involved in Atomic City Roadrunners for 30 years and was in on the creation of the CROP Walk/Turkey Trot event. Each year, he takes care of reserving LAMS for the event, measuring and marking the course, timing the runners and walkers and other details. He notes that, before the CROP Walk was added to it, the last race of the season for the Atomic City Roadrunners was always a Turkey Trot, held on North Mesa around Thanksgiving time.
“The late Aaron Goldman, a member of the club for many years, was also involved with the local CROP and LA Cares groups,” Williams said. “Back in 1997, he approached me, since I was president of the club, and together we thought that combining a CROP Walk with the Turkey Trot would work for the community. We thought it could be somewhat unique in that we could still give out turkeys and pies for Thanksgiving and also conduct the traditional CROP Walk like so many other communities had across the country.” The CROP Walk was a natural fit with Williams’s long history of helping other people.
Being able to either walk or run the course has helped draw more participants to the CROP Hunger Walk and Turkey Trot. Thanks to Williams’s promotion of the event, most members of Atomic City Runners come to the event, returning every year and bringing their friends and kids, because it offers them the chance to contribute to the worthy cause of fighting hunger through LA Cares and CROP (and the chance to win a turkey or a pie).
Williams is still involved in this event, all these years later, because he loves to run, wants to help out, and says, “it’s a fun event with lots of people showing up to participate.”
Chiravalle is in his second year of participation with the CROP Walk. He says he’s been aware of the good work LA Cares does helping distribute food to people in need locally.
“There are so many needs in the world,” he said. “Not just locally in New Mexico, with people who are hungry, but also people suffering from the impact of natural disasters.”
Chiravalle, who runs regularly for recreation, wants to help run for people in need. He’s enthusiastic, as is Williams, about being on the planning committee to make this a successful event. Chiravalle likes that CWS/CROP is raising money for those facing global crises like hunger, disasters and pandemics like Ebola. He is inviting all his fellow members of Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church, the Knights of Columbus and the Rotary Club, to participate in the CROP Hunger Walk and Turkey Trot this Sunday.
Everyone in town is invited to come out at 2 p.m. Sunday to the Los Alamos Middle School cafeteria to donate to the cause, walk, run or just watch. Donations also can be made online at http://hunger.cwsglobal.org: pull down the CROP Walk menu, find the Los Alamos walk, and click on the “donate” button.