84 Legacy Runners to Participate in 20th Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego

On June 4, 84 legacy runners from all different walks of life will be approaching the start line for their 20th straight Synchrony Financial Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon, having participated every year since 1998.

From retired zookeepers, to high school teachers, to motorcycle salesmen, these people represent the dedicated runners who have been with Rock ‘n’ Roll since the beginning. Read more about each of our legacy runners below and find out their favorite moment of the past 19 years.

Click on each photo to see their stories.

  • Bill Aaron Bill Aaron

    Bill Aaron

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 61
    Career: High school track and cross country coach
    Favorite Moment: “Finishing at what was Naval Training Center, which is now Liberty Station. We finished on the parade ground, which in 1974 I had marched on as a young sailor. I graduated from boot camp there. That brought back a lot of memories.”
    Note: Aaron is an AIDS survivor.
  • Sam Alongi Sam Alongi

    Sam Alongi

    Home: Sacramento, CA
    Age: 48
    Career: Landscape contractor
    Favorite Moment: “Always seeing my family waiting there at the finish. It’s just that love and support. There’s my wife, Robin, and my daughters, Michael, who’s 13 and Samantha, who’s 8. Amazingly, despite how sweaty I am, they let me hug them.”
  • Robert Archuleta Robert Archuleta

    Robert Archuleta

    Home: Scottsdale, AZ
    Age: 58
    Career: Flight Attendant
    Favorite Moment: “Just being able to get in the first one. I waited too long to enter the race. I called and someone said, ‘Sorry, we can’t help you. But you may want to come to the expo.’ At the expo someone said, ‘Just show up race morning.’ I showed up the day of the race and a person I met said, ‘You are persistent.’ She said she couldn’t take my money but told me just make a donation to charity. I donated to St. Vincent De Paul and they let me run. Had I not been able to run, I’d have gone back to Arizona with my tail between my legs.”
  • Sandi Askew Sandi Askew

    Sandi Askew

    Home: Redlands, CA
    Age: 69
    Career: Mother
    Favorite Moment: “Maybe it was just the first time I did San Diego. I really wanted to have some type of running legacy. I was thinking I’d only do 10 years. The first time I did it I thought, ‘Yeah, this can be done.’ I just got the bug and wanted to be a legacy runner somewhere.”
  • Steve Barnett Steve Barnett

    Steve Barnett

    Home: West Hills, CA
    Age: 61
    Career: Business broker
    Favorite Moment: “One year, it was when the race finished at the Marine Corps Depot, I’m running around about Mile 4 or 5 and I see this guy holding up a picture of a beautiful young woman. People are running for different causes and I’m thinking this poor girl, they’re running for her. For some reason this girl is in my head the whole time and I’m thinking about how lucky I am to be alive. I got to Mile 18 and there’s this fake (runners) wall, which I thought was kind of cruel if you ask me, and I’m feeling like this girl is sitting right on my shoulder. I’m having a conversation with this girl. ‘Hey, I’m happy to be running with you.’ The next things I know, her friends are with me, and I’m running with all these angels. That gets me through a couple miles. Around Mile 23, I see the same guy with the same picture of the girl. I turn around and ask, ‘Who is this person? I feel like I know her.’ He says, ‘It’s my wife. She’s running the race.’ I felt so silly. I’d been having a conversation with her for miles and miles.”
  • Michael Baumann Michael Baumann

    Michael Baumann

    Home: Visalia, CA
    Age: 60
    Career: Optometrist
    Favorite Moment: “I have family in San Diego and my favorite memory is just signing up and preparing for the inaugural Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon. For more than 400 days, I was looking forward to running the first Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon. My brother lives in San Diego, and it turns into a family reunion.”
  • Paul Baumhoefner Paul Baumhoefner

    Paul Baumhoefner

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 65
    Career: CalTrans equipment operator
    Favorite Moment: “In 2015, when 92-year-old Harriett Thompson became the oldest woman to run a marathon, she beat me. I was 25 yards behind her. They tried to usher me off and onto a sidewalk. Here was my big moment and they wouldn’t let me cross the finish line because all the TV cameras were trying to record Harriett. They were like, ‘Excuse me sir, can you get off to the side a little bit?’”
  • Drew Boomer Drew Boomer

    Drew Boomer

    Home: Gilbert, AZ
    Age: 54
    Career: Flotation therapy expert
    Favorite Moment: “Without a doubt, running through the ‘wear blue; run to remember’ mile last year. I was humbled. I was moved by the support of the military personnel on the side of the street. They were clapping and cheering for the runners. It a paradox of their enthusiasm for the participants and the participants’ enthusiasm while looking down at pictures of the fallen. Everybody stopped running. I had my hand over my heart. I could barely breathe.”
  • Alex Boswell Alex Boswell

    Alex Boswell

    Home: La Jolla, CA
    Age: 51
    Career: Real estate broker
    Favorite Moment: “Being a legacy runner is one of the coolest things I’ve done. There are very few things you do in life every year for 20 years. If it weren’t for being a legacy runner, I probably wouldn’t be running right now.”
  • Terry Brightwell Terry Brightwell

    Terry Brightwell

    Home: Santa Maria, CA
    Age: 55
    Career: Chiropractor
    Favorite Moment: “I was living in Northern California before the first race and saw the flier. ‘You missed the first Boston Marathon. Don’t miss the first Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon.’ I remember thinking it’d be cool to do the first 20 races. I ran the race and two months later sold my practice and moved to San Diego. It felt like home. Everyone was so healthy and beautiful.”
  • Diva Burns Diva Burns

    Diva Burns

    Home: Glendora, CA
    Age: 49
    Career: Retired 911 operator
    Favorite Moment: “My first one because that’s the first time I broke 3½ hours. I saw the balloon arch and remember looking at my watch going, ‘Oh my god!’ I started crying and said, ‘You can’t run and breathe if you’re crying, so stop crying.’”
    Note: Rock ‘n’ Roll will be Burns’ 151st marathon.
  • Denise Carbone Denise Carbone

    Denise Carbone

    Home: Westlake Village, CA
    Age: 58
    Career: Personal trainer/nutritionist
    Favorite Moment: “About four years ago, my husband and I had just gotten married six months earlier. He did the marathon with me. That was his first and only marathon. It was a different closeness. When you run with your loved one it’s a bond.”
  • Melvin Coleman Melvin Coleman

    Melvin Coleman

    Home: Greenville, NC
    Age: 47
    Career: Aviation
    Favorite Moment: “Probably the first time carrying the American flag. I’ve carried in all but the first one. I started the flag after Florence Griffith Joyner passed away, and I did it was a tribute to her. I’ve got people off the course running out, hugging me. I get love from all directions.”
  • Michael Collins Michael Collins

    Michael Collins

    Home: Salem, OR
    Age: 54
    Career: Computer programmer
    Favorite Moment: “I was recovering from a badly injured back the third year of the race and was under doctor’s orders not to run. I ended up walking the race with my parents. I finished two Ironman races that year, proof you can two Ironmans without running.”
    Note: Collins comes from endurance lineage. His parents, John and Judy Collins, are founders of Ironman Hawaii.
  • Rici Cornick Rici Cornick

    Rici Cornick

    Home: La Quinta, CA
    Age: 49
    Career: Math and science teacher
    Favorite Moment: “Running the marathon when I was seven months pregnant with my daughter, Danika, who’s now 10 years old. For 26 miles, I stopped at virtually all the bathrooms. I only run because my ego is so big, and I’ve got to stay on this list.”
    Note: Cornick and fellow legacy runner Janine Holmes cheered together at Monte Vista High School.
  • Richard Crater Richard Crater

    Richard Crater

    Home: Agoura Hills, CA
    Age: 59
    Career: Computer engineer
    Favorite Moment: “A couple years ago I enjoyed the dancing bikini girls. The course took us by them twice. They were dancing like go-go girls, standing on platforms. It was very uplifting. They were smiling and dancing and having a great old time. I took some pictures.”
  • Susan Daley Susan Daley

    Susan Daley

    Home: Chicago, IL
    Age: 57
    Career: Lawyer
    Favorite Moment: “Crossing the finish line last year was special because I hurt my right knee. A doctor had said no more marathons or running. Being able to do the race was really a special moment. It was spectacular. I started crying.”
    Note: Daley has finished 502 marathons.
  • Sherry Donaldson Sherry Donaldson

    Sherry Donaldson

    Home: Maryland Heights, MO
    Age: 56
    Career: Photographer
    Favorite Moment: “You know what really sticks out? On the 10th year the legacy runners were given a given champagne party. We got a jacket. It was amazing. You felt like a celebrity.”
  • Marvin Errickson Marvin Errickson

    Marvin Errickson

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 74
    Career: Lawyer
    Favorite Moment: “Having a beer on a trail. The Hash House Harriers always have beer at about Mile 23. It’s refreshing.”
    Note: The Hash House Harriers’ motto is 'It’s a drinking club with a running problem.'
  • Julie Espinosa Julie Espinosa

    Julie Espinosa

    Home: Los Angeles, CA
    Age: 57
    Career: Medical coder
    Favorite Moment: “In 2009, my mother was at the hospital at UCLA for cancer treatment. She was in the final months of her life, and she loved running. I raised my cell phone and put it on speaker phone so she could hear the electricity of the finish line. It brought her so much joy. That’s San Diego.”
  • Arlex Fontanares Arlex Fontanares

    Arlex Fontanares

    Age: 57
  • Tisha Gallarda Tisha Gallarda

    Tisha Gallarda

    Home: Danville, CA
    Age: 54
    Career: Corporate administration
    Favorite Moment: “Watching Harriett Thompson cross the finish line in 2015. It was amazing to see her make history for women."
    Note: (At 92, Thompson became the oldest woman to finish a marathon)
  • Debra Galli Debra Galli

    Debra Galli

    Home: LaVerne, CA
    Age: 50
    Career: Title insurance sales
    Favorite Moment: “Seeing the Galli Family at Mile 17. That’s just that little extra energizing oomph to help you finish the run. They hand me that half of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a cold wash cloth and I’m energized for the rest of the run.”
  • David Garcia David Garcia

    David Garcia

    Home: Chula Vista, CA
    Age: 55
    Career: Retired law enforcement
    Favorite Moment: “Last year, passing the “wear blue: run to remember” mile. All the flags and the photos, that was an uplifting tribute to those men and women who died serving our country. It felt great to be an American.”
  • Fred Garcia Fred Garcia

    Fred Garcia

    Home: Huntington Beach, CA
    Age: 55
    Career: Carpet cleaning
    Favorite Moment: “Crossing the finish line, seeing my kids there the first time as twin babies in 2003. They were born three months premature almost exactly one year earlier. You’re out there working, doing the marathon, pushing your body. But it’s all really to stay healthy for your family. To know what those babies did to survive? It all came together. Seeing them at the finish line was just a blessing.”
  • David Gong David Gong

    David Gong

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 55
    Career: Retail management
    Favorite Moment: “I think it was running with Team-In-Training the second year (1999). I trained by myself in ’98 and at the inaugural race it seemed like everyone was wearing a TNT purple singlet. Seeing the cause and support they had make me feel alone that first year. I had a childhood friend who died of leukemia. Fourteen years later, my brother was diagnosed with leukemia.”
    Note: Gong ran the first four Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathons. In June 2001, he fell in a mountain climbing accident that left him paralyzed from the shoulders down. He has continued racing Rock ‘n’ Roll as a hand cyclist.
  • Jay German Jay German

    Jay German

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 55
    Career: Software engineer
    Favorite Moment: “About five years ago I broke my neck in a bike accident three weeks before the race. Ironically, the person I hit was a Rock ‘n’ Roll legacy runner, out on a training run. I never said I was smart. I walked most of the race.”
  • Listy Gillingham Listy Gillingham

    Listy Gillingham

    Home: La Mesa, CA
    Age: 58
    Career: Patrick Henry High principal
    Favorite Moment: “It was the first time I quailed for Boston, about the fifth year of the race. I had a running colleague who helped me get through the last five miles of that race, keeping me focused after you lose it at the wall. Making jokes, making it fun, keeping your head in the game.”
  • Deborah Gobins Deborah Gobins

    Deborah Gobins

    Home: Phoenix, AZ
    Age: 59
    Career: Mortgage Broker
    Favorite Moment: "Just celebrating afterwards. You feel like you accomplished something significant. If it’s really hot and humid then I’m almost in tears, but happy to finish the race year after year.”
  • Bob Goralka Bob Goralka

    Bob Goralka

    Home: Novato, CA
    Age: 55
    Career: Transportation civil engineer
    Favorite Moment: “I always liked finishing when it was at MCRD. It was an open feeling and sometimes the Marines were out with the heavy equipment, like the tanks.”
  • Dawn Gordon-Pierre Dawn Gordon-Pierre

    Dawn Gordon-Pierre

    Home: Highland, CA
    Age: 59
    Career: Program coordinator
    Favorite Moment: “Crossing the finish line with my husband in 2003 after he had a triple bypass. He ran it with me. I had so much pride in him that he stuck with it because it’s not easy. He changed his lifestyle the day he had his surgery, his diet, exercise. He was real compliant with his medication. He wanted to be there for me. It was a moment of triumph.”
  • John Hagin John Hagin

    John Hagin

    Home: Fort Collins, CO
    Age: 73
    Career: Eastman Kodak marketing director
    Favorite Moment: “It was the first one, running over the wooden bridge across the airport. They built a bridge, and I didn’t know if the thing would hold together when we ran over it. It made it.”
    Note: Hagin had a tumor removed from his prostate three months before the inaugural 1998 race.
  • Kurt Hallock Kurt Hallock

    Kurt Hallock

    Home: Pacific Beach, CA
    Age: 61
    Career: Lawyer
    Favorite Moment: “Holding on the very first year. I was 42, had a good run the whole way and PR’d in 2:56. I trained with two fantastic runners, Larry Williams and Harvey Levine (both of whom were original investors in the race.). Another favorite moment was when two friends from Montana ran it with me. The next morning, the guy’s who’s a fair runner has picture on the cover of the Union-Tribune. It looked as if he was leading the race.”
  • Janine Holmes Janine Holmes

    Janine Holmes

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 50
    Career: Human resources
    Favorite Moment: "It’s been the relationships in the running community and friends that I’ve made. They’ve really become a part of my family. It’s that journey. They’ve seen the trials and tribulations of life with me.”
  • Tom Hosner Tom Hosner

    Tom Hosner

    Home: Trabuco Canyon, CA
    Age: 66
    Career: Suzuki Motorcycle Sales
    Favorite Moment: “My 100th marathon was Rock ‘n’ Roll in 2000. My two daughters ran with me for their first marathons. They were in college. It was just an extraordinary accomplishment to pull them along with me.”
    Note: Hosner’s marathon count is now up 320
  • Charlie Itchko Charlie Itchko

    Charlie Itchko

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 62
    Career: Construction remodeler
    Favorite Moment: "My 40th marathon, which was Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego in 2008, I qualified for Boston for the first time. I had to finish in 3:35. (He hit the timing mat in 3:31:27.) It was almost surreal. I finished holding a beer over my head.”
  • Deo Jaravata Deo Jaravata

    Deo Jaravata

    Home: Granada Hills, CA
    Age: 52
    Career: High school math teacher
    Favorite Moment: “When I first broke four hours, I think the third year. I went 3:40. I surprised myself. I was relaxed. I was just lucky, I guess.”
    Note: Jaravata has finished 423 marathons, including one in every state and continent. His PR is now 3:29:55
  • Jeffery Johnson Jeffery Johnson

    Jeffery Johnson

    Age: 65
  • Mark Johnson Mark Johnson

    Mark Johnson

    Home: Carlsbad, CA
    Age: 65
    Career: Running shoes sales
    Favorite Moment: “Pacing friends to their first marathon finishes. I’ve done a lot of marathons, but seeing someone cross the finish line at their first marathon is an experience that’s breathtaking.”
  • Randall Kam Randall Kam

    Randall Kam

    Home: Fullerton, CA
    Age: 59
    Career: Dentist
    Favorite Moment: “When I crossed the finish line in June 2012 and finished my 100th marathon. That’s some crazy stuff. I love the camaraderie out there because we’re all having shared misery for 26 miles."
    Note: Kam’s marathon count is now up to 138. He was diagnosed with Stage IV prostate cancer in January 2015. He did the 2015 race three days after a chemotherapy treatment.
  • Laurie Kearney Laurie Kearney

    Laurie Kearney

    Home: Carlsbad, CA
    Age: 50
    Career: Pediatrician
    Favorite Moment: “Catching the late Harvey Levine one year. He had been legacy runner. It was really late in the race when it finished at MCRD, probably around Mile 23 or 24 when I caught up to him. I’m like, ‘Harvey, you’re having a great day.’ His answer was, ‘Every day you can run is a great day.’”
    Note: April’s Boston Marathon was Kearney’s 239th marathon.
  • Robert Kearney Robert Kearney

    Robert Kearney

    Home: Chula Vista, CA
    Age: 56
    Career: Warehouse manager
    Favorite Moment: “I think it was when my daughter and wife both ran the half marathon the same day I ran the marathon. We ran together for a while. Just that they put in the effort to run with me. They’re not real runners, per se. That they put in the effort to make it happen was special.”
    Note: Robert turns 56 on the day of this year’s Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego
  • Daria Kelly Daria Kelly

    Daria Kelly

    Home: Encino, CA
    Age: 68
    Career: Medical tanscriptionist
    Favorite Moment: “Crossing the finish line. I never take it for granted. No matter how hard you train, things can go wrong. I’m not a runner, I’m a walker. So I’m out there for a long time, in the back of the pack. I’m just thankful I’ve finished and continued the legacy.”
  • Linda Kennedy Linda Kennedy

    Linda Kennedy

    Home: Alexandria, VA
    Age: 56
    Career: Human resources director
    Favorite Moment: “The year the 92-year-old woman (Harriett Thompson) ran the marathon. They were talking about her before the race, giving her bio, that she had battled cancer and lost her husband. I was so inspired. I was thinking, ‘Holy smokes, I hope I’m still running when I’m that age.’ I thought that was incredible.”
  • Dionne King Dionne King

    Dionne King

    Home: Mentone, CA
    Age: 44
    Career: Systems support analyst
    Favorite Moment: “The year the 92-year-old woman (Harriett Thompson) ran the marathon. They were talking about her before the race, giving her bio, that she had battled cancer and lost her husband. I was so inspired. I was thinking, ‘Holy smokes, I hope I’m still running when I’m that age.’ I thought that was incredible.”
  • Marilyn King Marilyn King

    Marilyn King

    Home: Mentone, CA
    Age: 62
    Career: Accounting
    Favorite Moment: “The male cheerleaders. They are just so funny. They crack me up every time I reach them. With those balloons for breasts, they’re jumping around, men with mustaches, beards and hair on their legs. They’re hilarious.”
  • Constance Koenig Constance Koenig

    Constance Koenig

    Home: San Bernadino, CA
    Age: 58
    Career: Nurse
    Favorite Moment: “I like the running Elvis. It’s a fun atmosphere, and they’re just entertaining. There was this one Elvis who ran with a cooler of packed beer. That’s the spirit
  • Victor Komlos Victor Komlos

    Victor Komlos

    Home: Los Angeles, CA
    Age: 47
    Career: Winery director of sales
    Favorite Moment: “It’s gotta be the finish line. I get emotional every single time. I get tears in my eyes, I well up with emotion. I get caught up that I did another one. And it feels good. It’s a sense of accomplishment.”
    Note: Komlos has lost 35 pounds in the last seven months. “I just didn’t like the way I felt and decided to do something about it.”
  • Michael Lamb Michael Lamb

    Michael Lamb

    Home: Winnetka, CA
    Age: 49
    Career: Property manager
    Favorite Moment: “In 2013, the year of the Boston Marathon bombing, everybody did the race with a sense of pride. It was more a sense of community, people were determined to do it in spite of Boston.”
  • Kristin Leaf Kristin Leaf

    Kristin Leaf

    Home: Scottsdale, AZ
    Age: 62
    Career: Interior design
    Favorite Moment: “Last year’s ‘wear blue: run to remember’ mile. It was so moving, so sobering. To see all those faces of men and women who fought for our country, I forgot I was running.”
    Note: Leaf will be running her 211th marathon and has completed 70 ultras.
  • John Lovberg John Lovberg

    John Lovberg

    Home: San Diego, Ca
    Age: 58
    Career: Physicist
    Favorite Moment: “Probably my best memory was my fastest time at Rock ‘n’ Roll, 3:49 in 2000. My goal was to break 3:50. I had done it once my life but I had been much younger. It was a lot of pain but a feeling of great accomplishment.”
  • Kelley Magill Kelley Magill

    Kelley Magill

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 54
    Career: Administration
    Favorite Moment: “I always try to wear something a little fun, and on the 10th year I wore a full beer-mug costume. My daughter and her boyfriend, now her husband, met me near SeaWorld and ran me to the finish. I figured I was going to be out there a long time and just wanted to make it fun.”
  • Delfino “Tino” Martinez Delfino “Tino” Martinez

    Delfino “Tino” Martinez

    Home: Encinitas, CA
    Age: 53
    Career: Restaurant manager
    Favorite Moment: “The fourth year of the race, right before getting on (state Route) 163, that was probably Mile 7, seeing my wife and my little boy cheering for me. It was emotional just to see him smile and say, ‘Go daddy.’ I kissed my wife, I kissed him and I started running.”
  • Jim Maxwell Jim Maxwell

    Jim Maxwell

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 62
    Career: Retired zoo keeper
    Favorite Moment: “Some of my favorite moments are when the weather’s good, and my body’s treating me well and I hear music, just rock to it. If it’s a hot day and I’m not feeling well, I don’t even hear the music. Sometimes the music is so good, I just want to hang out and forget the race.”
    Note: This year’s Rock 'n' Roll will be Maxwell’s 99th marathon. He’ll run his 100th this summer in Missouri.
  • Patrick McDonagh Patrick McDonagh

    Patrick McDonagh

    Home: Lake Forrest, CA
    Age: 52
    Career: Safety engineer
    Favorite Moment: “The first race, at around Mile 5 or 6, a train was coming. You have the trolley gates coming down. Ding, ding, ding. I’m looking at the gates dropping, but I hustle it through. I was one of the last people who bolted. I also ran as Elvis in about five of the races.”
  • Mike Melechinsky Mike Melechinsky

    Mike Melechinsky

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 56
    Career: Civil servant for department of defense
    Favorite Moment: “Finishing my first one because that was my first ever marathon. I had run the La Jolla Half Marathon and when I finished the race and people were handing out this black piece of paper that was about 16 by 24 with white letters. It read, ‘You missed the first Boston Marathon. Don’t miss the first Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon.’ I still have that poster. I had to do it.”
  • Farzad Noori Farzad Noori

    Farzad Noori

    Home: Santa Monica, CA
    Age: 48
    Career: VP of finance and planning for Paramount Pictures
    Favorite Moment: “I guess it was the very first one, 1998. They hadn’t cleared all the cars on the course and we sat at the start for 38 minutes. It was my third marathon and I was really hoping to qualify for Boston. I needed a 3:10. I ran a 3:09:38 and just squeezed under 3:10.”
    Note: Noori went on to qualify for Boston nine times
  • Leslie Oliver Leslie Oliver

    Leslie Oliver

    Age: 57
  • Johan Otter Johan Otter

    Johan Otter

    Home: Escondido, CA
    Age: 55
    Career: Physical therapist
    Favorite Moment: “Last year running through the “wear blue: run to remember” American flags. I don’t normally get emotional but that brought tears to my eyes. The whole thing was massively impressive. It was amazing.”
    Note: Otter kept his streak going in 2006, barely nine months after being attacked by a grizzly bear in Montana’s Glacier National Park. The attack left him with a broken neck and more than 70 percent of his scalp was ripped off. Otter underwent 10 surgeries after the attack
  • Elaine Perry Elaine Perry

    Elaine Perry

    Home: Lakeside, CA
    Age: 60
    Career: PE teacher
    Favorite Moment: “Every time I finish, it feels wonderful. It feels incredible, especially since I haven’t trained for 10 years. I have an old back injury from a car accident. Between that and my fragile feet, if I trained it would catch up to me. I just gut it out and do it.”
  • Beth Petersen Beth Petersen

    Beth Petersen

    Home: Glendale, CA
    Age: 84
    Career: Hospital laboratory secretary
    Favorite Moment: “It’s always exciting to see that finish line. They tell me I’m always smiling at the finish. I guess it’s because I enjoy doing it, and I’m glad that I can do it.”
    Note: Petersen is the oldest Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego legacy runner.
  • Robert Philkill Robert Philkill

    Robert Philkill

    Home: San Francisco, CA
    Age: 50
    Career: Cyber security
    Favorite Moment: “In 2007, the 10th marathon, my daughter was born six hours after I finished the marathon. I literally ran the marathon, got on first flight I could, walked in the door and my wife said, ‘I’m in labor.’ We went to the hospital and she had the baby. I couldn’t miss the damn race, and my wife didn’t kill me.”
    Note: Philkill has run 107 marathons
  • Jesslyn Ponce-Dick Jesslyn Ponce-Dick

    Jesslyn Ponce-Dick

    Home: La Mesa, CA
    Age: 56
    Career: Mary Kay sales director
    Favorite Moment: “The first year I ran and my baby girl was six weeks old. It was Father’s Day and it was on my other daughter’s seventh birthday. This is not recommended, not something you want to try at home. I had a friend meet me at the finish line with a breast pump. We drove straight to a parking lot and I pumped my breasts. I’m guessing not too many of the legacy runners have a similar story.”
  • John Prendergast John Prendergast

    John Prendergast

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 60
    Career: Retired CPA
    Favorite Moment: “The second running of the race was my favorite. I broke four hours for the first time. I think it was 3:53. It was a combination of that it was cooler, I was determined and breaking four hours was a big deal.”
  • Armando Ramos Armando Ramos

    Armando Ramos

    Home: Houston, TX`
    Age: 73
    Career: Retired grocer
    Favorite Moment: “About 10 years ago, I didn’t think I was going to make it to the starting line. I was really having a cold. I said, ‘Well, I’ve got to do it. It’s do or die, and I made it.” Asked what got him through the race, Ramos said, “Just believe in yourself, your faith. Talk to your guardian angel. He’ll push you, get you all the way through the finish line.”
  • Mark Scanlon Mark Scanlon

    Mark Scanlon

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 48
    Career: FedEx management
    Favorite Moment: “Just finishing the race in all the different places. Seeing Petco Park at the end was nice. It was spectacular. I’m a Padres fan. It made me think of all the games I’ve seen there. I love Ken Caminiti. He would do anything to win the game. But Tony Gwynn will always be my favorite Padre.”
  • Richard Schuermann Richard Schuermann

    Richard Schuermann

    Home: Gilbert, AZ
    Age: 58
    Career: Postal service carrier
    Favorite Moment: “The first or second year we ran by the former Navy base. My brother graduated on that Navy base. He was killed in a motorcycle accident in 1986 when he was 29. Just remembering him. It brought tears to my eyes. Then in 2002, stopping and kissing my baby daughter, who was five weeks old. She’s 15 now. Last year we ran the 5K together.”
  • Deborah Scott Deborah Scott

    Deborah Scott

    Home: Anaheim Hills, CA
    Age: 60
    Career: Retired from aerospace industry
    Favorite Moment: “The ‘wear blue: run to remember’ mile last year. That was the most touching things I’ve seen in all my 19 years. I felt just a combination of grief and pride. It’s hard to cry and run at the same time.”
  • Garry Sevel Garry Sevel

    Garry Sevel

    Home: Fresno, CA
    Age: 62
    Career: Doctor
    Favorite Moment: “At the second or third race, breaking the four-hour mark. That had been my goal. It was just an emotional outpouring finally achieving it. The hard work that the body experienced, the exhaustion, the jubilation, all of those emotions at once.”
  • Larry Shapiro Larry Shapiro

    Larry Shapiro

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 55
    Career: Health industry
    Favorite Moment: “Two years ago, finishing and seeing my little girl and wife at the finish line. Arianna was 9 months old at the time. To see her with my wife, Deborah, it was just nice making it to the end and seeing them there. There’s nothing like family.”
  • Shirley Shaw Shirley Shaw

    Shirley Shaw

    Home: Corvallis, OR
    Age: 66
    Career: Teacher and counselor, now fitness business office director
    Favorite Moment: “Being able to meet Frank Shorter and Steve Scott. I met them at the Boston Marathon expo more than a year before the first Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon, and they were so enthusiastic about getting this started that it was like, ‘Yes, I want to do this.’”
  • Debbie Shea Debbie Shea

    Debbie Shea

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 63
    Career: Clerk
    Favorite Moment: “Just the bands. That’s why I did the race in the beginning. I hadn’t run a marathon in 12 years. But a friend told me about the bands, and I just love music. There was an Elton John look-a-like at the end. I could have sworn it was Elton.”
  • Charles Sheets Charles Sheets

    Charles Sheets

    Home: Solana Beach, CA
    Age: 54
    Career: Electronics industry
    Favorite Moment: “Completing the 2012 race with my brother, Bill, who is an esophagus cancer survivor. It was a triumph, a race about celebrating health. We ran under four hours.”
  • Thomas Skroch Thomas Skroch

    Thomas Skroch

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 54
    Career: Waiter
    Favorite Moment: "Probably the first one because that was my first marathon. It was amazing. Just breathtaking. You start out fine, struggle through it, then toward the end you know you’re going to finish. Doing the race in San Diego, where I was born, it was amazing.”
  • David Sofranko David Sofranko

    David Sofranko

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 66
    Career: Respiratory therapist
    Favorite Moment: “My main reason for continuing is I got a 19-year streak going. I’m never going to win the marathon. I’m never going to win my age group or place in my age group. So maybe if I’m the last guy standing, that’s the only glory I’m going to get.”
  • Kirsten Starr Kirsten Starr

    Kirsten Starr

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 51
    Career: Physician
    Favorite Moment: “The first year, it was my first marathon. I got together with a friend and we said, ‘Let’s try it.’ So we’re running together, but at about Mile 18 or 19, we can’t find each other. Come Mile 24, we reunite and we’re crying. Only we’re not even producing tears because we’re so dehydrated. But it was the biggest joy because we were able to finish together.”
  • Kenny Summers Kenny Summers

    Kenny Summers

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 52
    Career: Hairdresser
    Favorite Moment: “The very first one ended up in Horton Plaza coming down Broadway. It was such an emotional day coming on Father Day and my mom and dad both were there for my very first one. At that point, it was biggest event I had trained for. To see them there meant so much to me.”
  • Tonson Tong Tonson Tong

    Tonson Tong

    Home: Cincinnati, OH
    Age: 50
    Career: Electrical/compliance engineer
    Favorite Moment: “Every time I run by a band. They keep me motivated.”
  • Linda Trout Linda Trout

    Linda Trout

    Home: Media, Pennsylvania
    Age: 67
    Career: Wealth Management
    Favorite Moment: “The time my daughter, who’s also a runner and lives in Oregon, decided to come down on a whim and watched me run. It was about 10 years ago. She followed me about the race course and was there at the finish line. A couple years later, she and her husband ran the race. It’s that family thing.”
  • Yoshi Uematsu Yoshi Uematsu

    Yoshi Uematsu

    Home: Poway, CA
    Age: 57
    Career: Assembling product design manager
    Favorite Moment: “The first time, 1998, that was my first marathon ever. We finished in front of Horton Plaza, on Broadway. Four toenails came off my feet a week after the race. I was bruised up really bad after about Mile 22. From that point on, I learned I need to trim my toenails.”
  • Laura Urish Laura Urish

    Laura Urish

    Home: Mission Viejo, CA
    Age: 58
    Career: Corporate governance specialist
    Favorite Moment: “Running into my parents at the train station after last year’s race. They were taking a train home, and I didn’t know if I’d finish in time to see them. My mom was already on the train and my dad was crossing to get on. They’re in their 80s and my dad is my biggest supporter.”
  • Bruce Urquhart Bruce Urquhart

    Bruce Urquhart

    Home: San Diego, CA
    Age: 62
    Career: Land Surveyor
    Favorite Moment: “Within the first five years of the race I ran a 3:06. I just think my fitness was better than it is now. I had a strong desire to try to beat three hours. It wasn’t like I was bonking. I was just running my race.”
    Note: Urquhart walked the 2010 Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon five months after being diagnosed with melanoma cancer and having brain surgery.
  • Steven Wallace Steven Wallace

    Steven Wallace

    Home: Benicia, CA
    Age: 64
    Career: Retired public works director
    Favorite Moment: “The first time we finished in the Marine Corps Recruit Depot. It’s a military town. The people in the military give us the freedom we enjoy. And as they say, freedom isn’t free. A lot of Marines were there when we came across the finish line, cheering us on. It was inspiring.”
  • Troy West Troy West

    Troy West

    Home: Speedway, IN
    Age: 52
    Career: Industrial Sales
    Note: “Through career changes, through divorce, through living in different cities, this has been one constant in my life. I have never seen diversity come together for one common goal like this. I’ve never seen so many people of different ages and racial groups come together one common goal. The friendships that I’ve made through the years of doing it. I plan on doing it until I’m no longer able.”