Rogue One: A Star Wars Story had a memorable quote, “Rebellions are built on hope.”
Let’s change that around a little: I want to rebel against hopelessness.
My name is Jared Prewitt. In 2014, at the age of 30, I had a stroke and was subsequently plagued with migraines that kept me from living a life that had once been very active. I lost over a year of my life because of this. I was unable to eat. I shrunk from 190 to 150 pounds. I cried. I grieved. I begged for it stop. I know what it’s like to be without this thing we call, hope. And, it’s awful. Fortunately, with the help of others, I clawed my way out of the abyss.
Whether it’s hope for a sick family member to recover, hope for a better future, hope to make it through finals week, hope for a mosquito-free summer; whatever it is, there are others who want to hope with you. I want to offer this hope to others. The people who are in dire need of it have been displaced by the ongoing conflict in the Middle East.
When I arrived in Ramadi, Iraq as an infantryman with 1st Battalion/6th Marine Regiment in September of 2006, we experienced over 100 attacks per week for the first 6 months we were there. Firefights became as normal as breathing. It was deemed by the top brass in the Pentagon and by several media outlets that the situation in Ramadi was “hopeless.”
After a nasty day where we lost 3 Marines from my company, this insurgent group--the precursor to ISIS--named Ramadi their caliphate. However, things didn’t go their way and during the last 30 days of our deployment, there wasn’t a single shot fired in the city. We had won.
While there wasn’t any gunfire during the last month, there was plenty of other action. After 8 months of house to house fighting, we watched as a flood of humanity made their way back to their homes. Streets were filled with people moving back. After having seen the worst of humanity for so long, I got a glimpse of the good, which made me realize; nothing is hopeless. We gave hope back to the people of Ramadi.
Then, around 2008, this formerly Ramadi based insurgent group, hunkered down and waited for the United States inevitable departure from Iraq before they exploded back on the world map in the shape of ISIS. We can’t stand around and let hopelessness take over like we did with ISIS in Syria and Iraq. Words cannot describe my sadness when I heard Ramadi had fallen into ISIS’s hands, only to rejoice when Iraqi forces took it back. There is always hope.
Together, we can persist and overcome the pitfalls of hopelessness.
Will you join me in my rebellion?
About the race: It's a run/walk fun run for the family or individuals. It will be timed, but not competitively.
Proceeds: All proceeds will go to the non-profit charity of World Compassion where they directly deal with the situation on the ground in Iraq and Afghanistan.
There will be games, food and other activities for those with families that don't want to do the 5k course.
School fundraiser: The Wall of Hope is where you can throw eggs, pie someone in the face, or dump a bucket of gravy on our surprise guest's heads. Proceeds from this will go towards New Hope Christian School's sports program.
No alcohol, sorry.
We will hold a moment of silence to commemorate 9/11 before race begins.