First Independence Day 5K, 10K kicks off events at Tech’s Macey Center

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The earliest festivities for Independence Day began with a quick run up the foothills toward M Mountain on Thursday morning. Approximately 50 runners and walkers came to participate in the first Independence Run, a new part of the celebration events held at New Mexico Tech each year on the Fourth of July. The run is also a new addition to a running series hosted by the City of Socorro.

The 10k run kicked off at 7 a.m. with 21 runners. John Leeper of Socorro had the best time, reaching the finish line in 43 minutes and 19.3 seconds. Julie Ford, also of Socorro, took second with 43 minutes and 53.2 seconds, followed by Irving Gomez, Ben Adam and Beth Cadol, all of Socorro. Socorro businessman Vernon Leseberg came in sixth with a time of 46:33.8 with James Napier of Albuquerque close behind.

Susann Mikkelson/El Defensor Chieftain: Contestants in the 10K race kick off at 7 a.m. on July 4 for the Independence Day Run in front of Macey Center at New Mexico Tech. There were approximately 30 contestants signed up for the 10K or the 5K run and the 5K walk.

Runners in the 5k followed the 10k runners with a 7:15 start. Seirra Cahill of Polvadera finished first with a time of 18 minutes and 40.35 seconds. Socorro High School Cross-country star Jared Lam finished second with a time of 19 minutes and 40.82 seconds, followed by Abigail Napier and Alec Napier in third and fourth, then Audrey Napier in sixth – all of Albuquerque. Robert Anthony of Socorro snuck into fifth place. Emma Montoya, one of the event’s youngest runners at eight years old and a Socorro resident, came in seventh with a time of 26:44.92, about 8 minutes after 19-year-old Cahill.

The City of Socorro running series includes three runs this year. The first was in April, the Independence Run was the second. The third run will occur in conjunction with the Festival of the Cranes in November.

For more information about the running series, please contact Robert Gonzales at 575-418-1449.