My Y Story: Charlie & Anita

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“A race of this importance and participation requires an army of volunteers, and we are proud to be a part of it!”

-Charlie

 

Over the last 124 years, the YMCA Buffalo Niagara Turkey Trot has become an internationally known event. Not only do runners and volunteers from across Western New York brave the elements for a morning of exercise, fun, and a sense of community – people from all around the world visit the Queen City to take part in the 8k footrace.

When Charlie and Anita Lemmex heard about the Turkey Trot, they knew they had to make the trip down from Ontario, Canada to check out the event for themselves. Little did they know, that trip would turn into an annual tradition spanning more than 40 years.

“My lengthy running career began in January 1973,” says Charlie. “I have run approximately 63,000+ miles, including 30 marathons. Through a connection with the Buffalo Belle Watling and Checkers running clubs, I began running YMCA Turkey Trots in 1977.” Charlie says he enjoyed running in all sorts of weather and the post-race parties.

After health issues sidelined Charlie in 2007, he and his wife Anita decided to experience the YMCA Turkey Trot in a different way, this time as volunteers. “It’s been a very rewarding experience,” he says. “It’s given us an opportunity to return our good fortune to the running community. A race of this importance and participation requires an army of volunteers, and we are proud to be a part of it! We would like to do more.”

Charlie and Anita are traffic volunteers and are often stationed near Niagara Square. If you plan on running this year, be sure to say hello!

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