FORT IRWIN, Calif. — Fort Irwin’s Dental Command (DENTAC) hosted their annual ‘2k for Tooth Decay’ road run, March 24. The community event focused on raising awareness for dental health.
The length of the run was meant to attract kids and families to participate, and it did – the course was filled with dogs, strollers and kids of all ages, with the youngest of the runners being four-year-old Holly Jacoby.
Upon arrival race participants were greeted by Spc. Marquon Jones, a dental assistant, who was dressed in a giant toothpaste tube costume dubbed “Tubey”. Jones was dancing, jumping around talking to the kids, and giving high-fives at the registration table. Proceeds from the $5 registration fee will be used to make a bigger impact in the community, said race organizer Spc. Allen Milles.
“Family focused events like these hopefully bring some fun to the community, make [DENTAC’s] presence known, and hopefully show kids that the dentist is not so scary,” Milles said. All runners were given goodie bags that contained toothpaste, toothbrushes, floss and stickers to promote oral health.
The race started promptly at 9 a.m. Maj. A.J. Lytle, an oral surgeon at Fort Irwin, thanked the runners for coming out, braving the cold and joining the fun. Runners of all ages laced their shoes, adjusted their sweat bands, and started their tracking devices before dashing off at the sound of the starting horn. Beginning at Jack Rabbit park, the route passed through the Town Center and toward Sandy Basin before looping around and finishing back at the park.
As runners finished, they were again greeted by Jones, who ran up and down the four-way intersection on Langford Lake Road. He stopped incoming traffic to ensure runners’ safety and encouraged runners to “finish strong,” giving each one a high-five as they pushed through the last leg of the route.
Before he handed out medals to the first, second and third place runners, Milles thanked everyone for coming out and “freezing your kneecaps off.”
Coming in first at an even 12 minutes was 10-year-old Chip Kimble. A close second was Kimble’s sister, 13-year-old Clancy Kimble, who clocked in at 12:01. The third-place runner was 10-year-old Leaf Dewitt, finishing at 12:04. Both of the Kimble siblings participate in cross-country, practicing twice weekly.