"I've got a measuring wheel in the car," said the Maclay School coach. "I'm going back to see how far that was."
The course was slightly shorter than the usual 5K route through the park, but Droze's 16:57 was still good enough for the win that Saturday morning, 5 September 2015. Deborah Congdon took the women's title, finishing 16th overall in 25:01. 77 athletes finished the run in the park, with another 21 completing a one-mile fun run.
The race started shortly after 8:30 AM from the Lake Hall recreation area in Maclay Gardens State Park. Gary Droze led, with Tony Guillen and Mitchell Michalak in close pursuit. Michalak dropped off the pace early, and master runner Guillen didn't last much longer.
"I tried to hang on to Gary as long as I could," said Guillen. "But then he just pulled steadily away."
Droze ultimately pulled more than a minute away, winning the race with a 16:57. Guillen was second in 17:58. Michalak held off Bainbridge High cross country runner Colby Nix for third, 19:57 to 20:01.
Droze's time was fast enough that he wanted to measure the course. Master runner Deborah Congdon was less pleased with her own time.
"It wasn't my best," said Congdon.
Still, her 25:01 was fast enough to make Congdon the fastest woman in the field by over a minute. Bethany Wester and Leah Baehrie were back and forth during the race, fighting for the second women's spot. Wester narrowly prevailed in the end, 26:16 to Baehrie's 26:18, the two runners placing 19th and 20th overall.
Top Ten Men, 2015 Fallen Heroes 5K
- 16:57 ~ Gary Droze (M, 54)
- 17:58 ~ Tony Guillen (M, 46)
- 19:57 ~ Mitchell Michalak (M, 19)
- 20:01 ~ Colby Nix/Dueno (M, 16)
- 20:16 ~ Spenser Amesellem (M, 14)
- 20:38 ~ David Yon (M, 59)
- 20:53 ~ Bob Asztalos (M, 56)
- 21:05 ~ Tim Knodel (M, 33)
- 22:03 ~ Michael Labossiere (M, 49)
- 22:48 ~ Jason Tregler (M, 42)
Top Ten Women, 2015 Fallen Heroes 5K
- 25:01 ~ Deborah Congdon (F, 45)
- 26:16 ~ Bethany Wester (F, 33)
- 26:18 ~ Leah Baehrie (F, 25)
- 26:32 ~ Beth Knodel (F, 35)
- 26:40 ~ Leah Knodel (F, 11)
- 26:54 ~ Harriet Moore (F, 52)
- 27:25 ~ Maggie Power (F, 23)
- 27:28 ~ Sandra Conrad (F, 44)
- 28:25 ~ Michelle Comeaux (F, 42)
- 29:19 ~ Dianne Dearduff (F, 56)
|Winners of the Fallen Heroes 5K, 2009 - 2015|
|1 August 2009||17:02, Christian Minor||22:07, Olivia Swedberg||164|
|4 September 2010||18:27, Robert Abellera||23:50, Karima Anderson||140|
|13 August 2011||17:14, Gary Droze||21:38, Tiffany Barz||232|
|7 September 2013||15:45, Stanley Linton||21:04, Jillian Heddaeus||94|
|20 September 2014||18:21, Michael Martinez||20:25, Brittney Barnes||107|
|5 September 2015||16:57, Gary Droze||25:01, Deborah Congdon||77|
|The 2009 Fallen Heroes 5K was run on a slightly long course in Tom Brown|
The 2010-2015 races were run in Maclay Gardens State Park.
There was no Fallen Heroes 5K in 2012.
- Complete results of the 2015 Fallen Heroes 5K at gulfwinds.org
Martinez and Barnes make fast tracks at the Fallen Heroes 5K
- More photos of the 2015 Fallen Heroes 5K
- Fred Deckert's photos of the 2015 Fallen Heroes 5K
- 2014 story, “Martinez and Barnes make fast tracks at the Fallen Heroes 5K”
- 2013 story, “Linton and Heddaeus rewrite the records at the Fallen Heroes 5K”
- 2011 story, “Droze and Barz fly to firsts at Fallen Heroes 5K”
- 2010 story, “Abellera and Anderson prevail at Fallen Heroes 5K”
- 2009 story, “2009 Fallen Heroes Run, Tallahassee, Florida”
- Operation One Voice
- Use the Trouble Afoot! calendar to help plan your fall racing schedule!