MERIDEN — The rainy weather and dreary sky was no match for the first Meriden Memorial Mile on Monday.
The one-mile-race began at Israel Putnam School on Parker Avenue and ended on Broad Street near the monuments to veterans.
“We had a community of people who thought that this was a great way to celebrate Memorial Day. I live close by and we always drive by the monuments and we are runners so we thought that this was a great way to celebrate,” said David Radcliffe, an organizer of the race.
Proceeds will benefit local veterans at Middlesex Community College.
“I was selected as a volunteer to be a part of the MMM committee and it really showed that nothing is better than what this event is doing and that’s raising funds for a positive and progressive message,” said City Councilor Miguel Castro.
The race began with Rich Couture, commander of Meriden’s United Veterans Council, and Tom Skibicki, of the Antique Veterans of Meriden, saying a few words.
After the speeches, Mayor Kevin Scarpati sang the national anthem.
The top three men and top three women runners received trophies.
In the men’s competition, Derek Destefano finished first with a time of 5:13. Second place went to Phillip Crowsby at 5:37, and, by less than a fraction of a second, Steve Bucchieri was third at 5:37.
Erin Pirro took first place in the women’s competition with a time of 7:02. Second place went to Joy Battista at 7:12, and in third place, 11-year-old Macy Figlewski came in at 7:21.
“We were so happy with the turnout, that everyone came to support this cause even with the bad weather,” said Radcliffe.