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Service to the Community

On Saturday, November 11, 2023, students, faculty, staff, and community members gathered at the Mini Park to commemorate Veterans Day. Hosted by UAB Student Affairs and Veteran Services, the weather did not prevent racers and their supporters from participating in the inaugural Veterans Day 5K. Clouds hung overhead as the late-morning rain sprinkled during warm-ups and race announcements.


Nathaniel Rutledge, retired Chief of Police for the city of Bessemer, welcomed racers with a performance of The Star Spangled Banner. Sponsored by Birmingham Water Works and O’Reilly’s Auto Parts, UAB Veteran Services had over 400 participants support their Veteran Emergency Relief Fun.


Racers began running, walking, jogging, and rucking down 13th St. S, making their way across campus twice before crossing the finish line.


Nadia Gwinn, a UAB student studying psychology, currently serves in the Army National Guard. She and her mother participated in the race together; Gwinn stated, “This kind of race is a fun way to remember Veterans Day. There are people who are away from their families for 14-16 months at a time, if they can do that then I can run this race.”


Gwinn crossed the finish line shortly before her mother. Volunteers and those who had already completed the race joined Gwinn in cheering her mother on in the last few steps of the race.

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Proceeds from the 5K directly supported the UAB Veteran Relief Fund. This award assists UAB veteran and active duty students regarding housing, healthcare, textbooks, and other necessities that students need to be successful.


To stay up to date on UAB Veteran Services, their event, and programs, click here.