Annual Run to Benefit Bloomingdale Library Attack Survivor set for May 18

By D'Ann White

The event is organized by East Bay High School's Student Goverment Association.

Student volunteers from East Bay High School’s Student Government Association are making last-minute preparations to host the second annual 5K4Q Run at 8 a.m. on Saturday, May 18 at E.G. Simmons Park, 2401 19th Ave. NW, Ruskin.

The purpose of the event is to raise funds for the continued care of East Bay High alumnus, Queena, who survived a brutal attack in April 2008 outside the Bloomingdale Regional Library in Valrico.

Race day registration and packet pickup begins at 7 a.m., while the 5K race kicks off after opening ceremonies at 8 a.m.

Registration fees will benefit Queena and are $30 for 5K runners or walkers, $25 for students and $15 for the 1-mile Fun Run.

T-shirts on race day will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

Join Queena T-shirts also will be for sale on race day for $20 each, while supplies last.

Queena will be on hand at the event to greet runners at the finish line.

The 5K will be followed by a 1-Mile Fun Run at 9:15 a.m. where Queena has a special surprise in store for race participants and the community.

In addition, a raffle will be held prior to the presentation of awards, featuring a variety of gift cards, restaurant certificates and golf foursomes donated by local businesses. Tickets will be available the morning of the race for $2 each, or three for $5.

Medals will be awarded following the race activities, and a special presentation will be made to Queena and her family by the students.

For more information on Queena, visit her website. This site documents the her journey to recovery and provides updates on her most recent treatments, therapies and details of her daily life.

Last month marked five years since the former student government member was brutally attacked outside of the Bloomingdale Regional Library, leaving Queena unable to walk, speak or see. Medicaid covers only $1,500 per year of the her physical and speech therapy, while nearly $70,000 is required annually for all of treatments that have helped her make progress. These additional expenses are funded through donations from the community.

Donations can be made payable to the Bloomingdale Library Assault Victim Trust at any Bank of Tampa or SunTrust Bank.

For information, contact event organizer Michelle Berland at or 813-364-GO5K (4655).  

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