The second Coach Jay Run on Sunday morning will honor Jay Ingram, who was killed in a hit-and-run incident in January 2012 while the 32-year-old was on his morning run along North Booth Road in Kennesaw.
All proceeds from the run will benefit Kate’s Club and The Jay Ingram Family, his widow, Corinne, and their two children, Aiden and Kailyn.
Kate’s Club is an organization that provides grief counseling for children who have lost a parent or sibling.
“This organization has been a help to Mrs. Ingram and her family,” said event coordinator Dean Harris.
There are three different runs scheduled, the “Yeah Baby” 10K, a 5K and “Mohawk Mile.” The 10K is considered a challenging road course, followed by the road course for the 5K and a one-mile run on the grass soccer fields.
The runs begin at 7:30 a.m. at the NASA United Quest Soccer Fields off Hawkins Store Road in Kennesaw.
The 10K was added to the run this year because it was Jay Ingram’s preferred race.
“We added this to draw in a bigger audience, more serious runners because people looking for a longer run and just to stay true to Jay,” Harris said.
She said 1,200 runners participated last year, but they are hoping to see twice that many this year.
“With a memorial, it has a tendency to decrease over years, but Coach Jay has had such a huge following, we’d love to see the numbers double,” she said.
Harris said Ingram was a pivotal part of his school, church and soccer communities.
“We’re just hoping that anybody who knew Jay and loved Jay would come out and support him again this year,” she said.
Vendors are also welcome, and bounce houses will be set up for kids, as well as a DJ with music and games.
Individuals who were close to Ingram are also raising money on their own to donate to the cause.
Olivia Durham, one of Ingram’s former soccer players, created what teammates are calling “Jay’s Jars” to collect change for the two organizations.
“He was really fun to be around, and he was always somebody that made you feel special and always very encouraging on and off the field,” she said. “We really miss him.”
Her mother, Marsha Durham, said the girls chose to collect change because Jay “changed” all their children’s lives.
“We were trying to come up with a creative way to collect and make it really meaningful,” she said.
Olivia chose to collect her change from home, by cleaning out the couches, washer and dryer and finding it wherever she could.
“Every night we would dump our change in the jars,” Marsha Durham said.
The 10K will cost $40 to register through April 20 and $45 on race day, $30 for the 5K or $35 Sunday, and $20 for the Mohawk Mile and $25 the day of the race.
Registration can be done online, by mail or in person at Cobb’s two Big Peach Running Co. locations, and anyone willing to volunteer in order to support the cause can sign up at volunteerspot.com.
Awards will be presented to the overall top man and woman for the 5K and 10K and the top age group finishers in 14 age groups.
For more information, visit the Coach Jay 5K website at coachjay5k.com.