Teens Remembered at Mad Dash in Waitsfield on Crash Anniversary

Waitsfield, Vt. - One year later hearts still ache for the five young lives lost in a wrong way crash on Interstate 89. On Sunday, the teenagers were remembered at the 22nd Annual Mad Dash in Waitsfield, Vermont.

Members from Harwood Cross Country Team lead the pack at the 2017 Mad Dash 5 and 10K Race. Jordi Kulis is Captain of the Harwood Cross Country team. She said everyone is holding up, but their classmates are still at the front of their minds.

"I think it's definitely been a little bit hard," Kulis said. "We had the gazebo dedication a few days ago and that definitely brought back some memories, but we've been doing pretty well."   

This year's Dash honored the memory of those five students– Eli Brookens, Liam Hale, Mary Harris, Cyrus Zschau who were students at Harwood and their friend Janie Chase Cozzi, a student at Kimball Union Academy.

The student's names were in hearts on this year's Mad Dash t-shirt. Four student names were in a gold heart, which is one of Harwood's school colors. The other student in orange that is one of KUA's colors. Their names were also hung on a banner at the bib pick up and registration table.

President of the Mad River Path Association Board Laura Brines, who organizes the event, said about 400 runners participated this year. Brines explained this year was different than other because it fell on the anniversary date, but it was important to hold it.

"We thought it was very important to have a place for the community to be together," Brines said. "We're an incredibly close knit community here and this just gave especially the young people of our community a place to be together and do something positive."

Brines said a portion of the registration fee will benefit building a new path in honor of the students who all grew up in the Mad River Valley.

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