Sheep Dog Impact Assistance (SDIA) is ready for their 10th Anniversary 10K Ruck March at a new location – Lawrence Plaza in Bentonville – on Saturday, June 27, 2020, from 8:00am to 6:00pm. Funds raised from the event will allow SDIA to continue its mission to help Sheep Dogs (Veterans and First Responders) Get Off The Couch™ and continue serving through their Disaster Response Mission, Outdoor Adventure and other programs.
Along the route, SDIA will be honoring five fallen heroes, including Fayetteville’s own Officer Stephen P. Carr, 27, who was killed in the line of duty on December 7, 2019. He was hired by the Fayetteville Police Department in April 2017, and was a patrol officer assigned to the Dickson Street Entertainment District. Officer Carr was known as a “gentle giant.” He was calm, fair, and truly cared about the individuals he served in the entertainment district.
The other honorees are:
- Sergeant 1st Class Javier Jaguar Gutierrez, 28, died on February 8, 2020, while conducting Special Operations in Afghanistan. He served in the US Army as a 7th Special Forces Senior Communications Sergeant. Born in Jacksonville, Florida, Gutierrez was deeply in love with his wife, Gabby, and treasured their 4 children. Gutierrez was posthumously promoted to the rank of Sergeant 1st Class and awarded the Bronze Star and Purple Heart.
- Officer Michael Shaun Mosher, 37, of Overland Park, Kansas, was shot and killed while attempting to arrest a hit-and-run suspect on March 3, 2020. He served the City of Overland Park honorably with the Police Department in various capacities through his nearly 15-year career. Officer Mosher was the president of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 21, and also served his community by organizing events to benefit numerous charitable organizations around the Kansas City area. His devotion to his community persisted through his final act. Officer Mosher left behind his wife, Corinne, and daughter, Tyler.
- Detective Cedric Dixon, 48, lost his battle to COVID-19 on March 28, 2020. Dixon was an NYPD detective for the 32nd Precinct in Harlem whose co-workers described him as a “gentle giant.” The Bronx native had a smile and friendly energy that was infectious to everyone around him. Dixon was a 23-year veteran of the NYPD, and for several years he served in the school unit at the 40th Precinct in the South Bronx.
- Captain Andy DiMaggio, 57, of LaGrangeville, NY, passed away on May 3, 2020, after a hard fought battle with COVID-19. He joined the New Rochelle Fire Department in April of 1989, and spent 31 years mastering his skills as a fire fighter. He was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in 2005 and rose to Captain in 2012. DiMaggio was a man you could depend on to figure out a solution to any situation, and was what every firefighter aspired to be.
There are multiple options for the Ruck – two in-person events: 10K Ruck March and 3K Fun Ruck, and a Virtual Ruck March for those who cannot attend on June 27 or live outside the Northwest Arkansas area. The in-person events will be held on June 27 from 8:00am to 6:00pm, allowing participants to start at a time convenient to them and to adhere to social distancing guidance. Traditionally, a Ruck March requires participants to carry a weighted “ruck sack” (backpack), and SDIA encourages ruckers to carry a backpack weighing between 5-20lbs (or heavier for an added challenge!), but a ruck is not required. For all events, participants can create and join teams to ruck alongside friends & family and compete against each other.
Pre-registration for the 10K Ruck March (6.21 mi) is just $40 per adult, $35 for youth (ages 4-17) and seniors (over age 65). All 10K participants who successfully complete the route will receive a special finisher’s medal. Pre-register at https://cutt.ly/SDIARuckMarch. (Note: Registration prices will increase the day of the event.)
The 3K Fun Ruck pre-registration is $30 for adults, $25 for youth and seniors, and is perfect for families desiring to walk together and those preferring a shorter distance. 3K (1.86 mi) ruckers will receive a special challenge coin upon successful completion. Participants can pre-register for the at https://cutt.ly/SDIARuckMarch. (Note: Registration prices will increase the day of the event.)
The Virtual 10K Ruck March is $35 for everyone (ages 4 and up), and can be broken down into smaller segments and completed anytime, anywhere by anyone through its extended deadline of July 26. Results must be recorded on the site by midnight July 26 for participants to receive a special finisher’s medal. Registration for the Virtual 10K Ruck March can be found at https://cutt.ly/SDIAVirtualRuck.
This year SDIA is celebrating all that it has accomplished in its 10 years as a nonprofit. Since its founding in 2010, SDIA has helped Sheep Dogs in need (Veterans and First Responders injured in combat or the line of duty, or experiencing extreme stressors) #GetOffTheCouch through its Disaster Response Mission, Outdoor Adventure and other programs.
- Disaster Response Missions (DRMs) – deployed 1,271 SDIA Members & Volunteers on 63 DRMs, and assisted 12,583 people by mucking out homes & tarping roofs, clearing 2,024 trees from 956 properties, and distributing 169,790 lbs of food, water and supplies to those devastated by natural disasters.
- COVID-19 DRM – During the Coronavirus pandemic, SDIA found unique and safe ways to assist 25,427 people by delivering 155,604 lbs of food, water and meals, distributing 754 lbs of disinfecting supplies, 7,198 N95, medical and handmade masks, 29 prescriptions and other necessities, and transporting 96,886 lbs of donated food to food pantries.
- Outdoor Adventures – sponsored 1,756 Sheep Dogs in need for 144 adventures, including 11 large-scale trips (two trips to New York City, one to Washington DC, three to Yellowstone National Park, and one to Yosemite National Park), and small-scale adventures, such as 1-2 day trips to hunt, fish, hike, boat, skydive, scuba dive, snowmobile, compete in various obstacle course races, and more.
- Other Programs – During the holiday seasons, more than 6,200 Sheep Dogs in need and their families received Thanksgiving meals, Christmas gifts and/or gift cards. SDIA has also provided resource referrals and other assistance to more than 400 Veterans, First Responders and their families.
By gathering together Sheep Dogs who have suffered similar traumas and experiences for continued service and physically challenging opportunities, SDIA has found that the camaraderie and peer support they receive fosters healing and is critical to their overall well-being. Their attitude, motivation and perspective are drastically improved, which can be a catalyst for them to create the positive change needed to reengage in living an active, meaningful and productive life.
Not interested in marching, but want to help? Please consider making a tax-deductible donation by visiting the Donation page on our website (www.SheepDogIA.org/get-involved/donate).
For more information about the 10th Anniversary 10K Ruck March and SDIA’s 10th Anniversary, contact Jayme Lingo (JLingo@SheepDogIA.org or 740-502-7475) or Cortney Wells (CWells@SheepDogIA.org or 636-357-1531), or visit www.SheepDogIA.org.