Planning underway for third annual NEGU race

Chris Goodwin during the first annual Never Ever Give Up Race, followed by his mother and father. (Contributed)

Chris Goodwin during the first annual Never Ever Give Up Race, followed by his mother and father. (Contributed)

By GINNY COOPER / Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA—Jane McDaniel planned the very first NEGU 5k in honor of Chris Goodwin, a former Shelby County High School student who lost his left leg in a car accident in February 2012.

The event was wildly successful, with over 40 runners and more than $2,000 raised for Goodwin and his family.

“At that race, people just kept asking me ‘are you going to do it again?’” McDaniel said, and she did, more than doubling the amount of participants with 175 runners and $5,000 raised for five children in need.

This year, the Never Ever Give Up 5k and one mile run will raise money for Jeffrey Baker, a 19 month old suffering from congenital CMV; Carly Chandler, a three year old suffering from CDKL5; and Aiden Dyson, a four month old with VATER syndrome.

The race will take place the morning of Liberty Day on June 28, beginning at 7 a.m. for those running the 5k and 8:15 a.m. for those running the one mile race.

Registration for the 5k will be $35 before the race and $45 the day of the race. Registration for the one-mile race will be $25 before the race and $35 the day of the race.

McDaniel, who also volunteers with the Shelby Humane Society, will be offering a special $10 discount on the registration fee for those who adopt a pet at the SCHS kick-off party on June 1.

For McDaniel, the best part of organizing the race is meeting new faces and hearing new stories.

“I’ve always had a heart for special needs kids and families,” McDaniel said. “It’s just something to help the community out.”