OKLAHOMA CITY – As thousands of Oklahomans cross the start line of the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon, many family members and friends are along the sidelines cheering on the runners.
Several of those runners belong to the NewsChannel 4 family, including Justin Kracht.
Kracht is one of KFOR’s promotions producers and he is an avid runner.
Kracht began running in 2013 as a way to stay healthy.
“Running is a way for me to wipe each day’s slate clean. Forgetting all my worries, zoning out, and letting my legs carry me. But it’s also my way of setting goals and challenging myself. I want to find my limits, see how far and fast I can really go. I’m pretty competitive at times and I like the challenge of running races,” he said.
Now, Kracht has completed five marathons including the Boston Marathon last week.
“The Boston Marathon represents the pinnacle of many runners’ lives. It is a difficult race to gain entry let alone run. Runners have to meet a qualifying standard in order apply for an entry to the Boston Marathon. It takes a lot of work to get there. I will never forget my experience running that race. So many people come out to cheer and support the runners, you feel so welcome. When you make that last turn onto Boylston Street, and the finish line comes into view, you’re surrounded by thousands of screaming fans. It takes your breath away,” he said.
Sunday’s Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon will be Kracht’s second Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon.
“The OKC Memorial Marathon is one of the reasons I’m a runner! Being new to the city in 2013 I was beginning to see, and feel, the impact of the bombing of the Murrah Building had on the people I met. The OKC Memorial Marathon brings the community together in the spirit of family, respect, and honor. It’s a time when we as a city, state, and nation come together to remember the folks we lost and to hold them close. I had to be a part of it. Watching our coverage in 2013, I was in wholehearted awe and envy of the lead runners. I thought, “I wish I could be like them.” Not long after, on one of my daily walks, I decided to run,” he said.
Congratulations to Justin and all of the other runners! We are proud of you!