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Brain Injury Association expects more than 700 racers for Memorial Day run, will honor Ralph Yarl

Brain Injury Association of Kansas and Greater Kansas City
Posted at 1:24 PM, May 25, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Brain Injury Association of Kansas and Greater Kansas City will host its 37th Memorial Day run on Monday. Runners participating in the "Going the Distance for Brain Injury Run" will lace up their shoes and take off in a 5K, 10K or walk at Loose Park.

The organization has 725 racers signed up so far but they're hoping to reach at least 1,000. Participants picked up their informational packets Saturday morning at Fleet Feet in Overland Park. The purpose behind the event is to raise awareness to brain injuries and support their mission with providing resources to those who live with it everyday.

"Survivors are on a life long journey with their brain injury so we want to make sure we acknowledge their successes and challenges they face everyday and be on the journey with them in life," said Heather Pilkinton, executive director for the Brain Injury Association of Kansas and Greater Kansas City.

This year's honoree is Ralph Yarl, a teenager who survived being shot a year ago while he said went to the wrong house trying to pick up his siblings.

"It’s amazing to see Ralph where he is today. He is an inspiration to all survivors and all of us in general," Pilkinton said. "He’s very active, puts on a brave face saying ‘Hey, this is my journey and I want others to be aware of it'. He’s inspiring and others are going to identify with his story.”

Yarl is expected to make an appearance at the race. Registration is open until Monday morning.