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Race To End Abuse 5K Run/Walk set Nov. 13 to battle local abuse

By J.J. Smith. After six family violence deaths in the Rockwall/Rowlett area since April – plus numerous child abuse cases – community leaders have organized a 5K Run/Walk Saturday morning, Nov. 13, to raise funds for information campaigns in schools and media to prevent and end domestic, dating, child and pet abuse across Rockwall County.

The second annual Lillian Smith “Race To End Abuse” 5K/1K Walk will be held behind the Kroger food store on Arista Dr. beginning at 9 am.

The event has been organized by the non-profit Rockwall-based Lillian Smith Family Violence Foundation, which develops statewide media campaigns and school presentations to battle abuse.

Board and Advisory Council members include State Sen. Bob Deuell, Rowlett Mayor John & Debra Harper, Rockwall Bar Association President & “Texas Superlawyer” John Browning, former Dallas Morning News Editor Dawn Redig, Remington College Criminal Justice Instructor Phyllis Perez and J.J. Smith, publisher of TheRockwallNews.com.

Trophies, medals and ribbons will be awarded to the fastest male and female runners in many age groups in the 5K Race. Free T-shirts, fruit, snacks and water will be provided to participants

Online preregistration fees to walk or race are $25 for adults, $10 for children (8-12) and $30/$15 at the event.  Families with three or more members are just $50. Teams with six or more members are just $20 per person. Pre-register at www.racetoendabuse.com through Nov. 11 or register at the event.

Co-sponsors include the Rockwall Walmart Supercenter, Heritage Christian Academy, Rep. Ralph Hall, State Sen. Bob Deuell, Rockwall Co. District Attorney Kenda Culpepper, The Fulton School, Care United Medical Center, Rockwall Urgent Care, Rockwall Running Center, Curves Fitness Center, Lady of America Fitness Centers, Willis Fine Jewelry, Amish Furniture Showcase, Palio’s Pizza Café, TheRockwallNews.com, PegasusNews.com, 95.3 FM “The Range,” & 92.1 FM “The Possum.”

“The thousands of abuse survivors living in our community are especially invited to attend the event to celebrate their survivorship and remember those who have lost their lives,” said Smith, whose mother, Lillian Smith, was murdered in front of him when he was 10 by his father, her ex-husband.

“An average of three women and five children are killed every single day across America in family violence-related incidents,” he continued.

“Six family violence-related deaths have occurred in the Rockwall-Rowlett area alone since April, plus an average of five women per day contact the Women In Need women’s shelter office in Rockwall for help.”

“The family violence epidemic is the leading cause of injury to women and children in America. More women and children have been killed by family violence since 9-11 than all those who have been killed in the War On Terror – including the 3,000 who died that day and all the military deaths.

“We have to bring it to an end, and we’ll only do that by ensuring our community has the resources to protect and aid victims, plus by educating males and females how to change their unacceptable behaviors.”

According to several studies, one in four women and one in seven children are injured every year in the U.S. by family members, intimate partners, ex-spouses, parents and guardians.

For more information, visit www.RaceToEndAbuse.com or call J.J. Smith, 214-317-1718.

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