Monday, August 15, 2011, is the deadline for sponsors to come on board in time to get their logos on the back of supporting t-shirts for the 1st Annual Salvation Army/Red Shield HEELS FOR RED SHIELD 5K walk/run fundraiser being held on Saturday, September 3, 2011, with check-in at 7 AM and race time at 9 AM from the center located at 2915 High Street.
Sponsors not concerned with their logos being on t-shirts are deperately needed, and are in no way being left out from making any donation they can manage for what will be the ongoing experience of keeping ‘The Shield’ a safe haven for members of the surrounding 29th and High Street area.
The return to the Red Shield/Salvation Army cause by Captain Ron McKinney and his wife Roberta McKinney has instilled new life into a once flourishing program that has recently fallen on hard times, the economy and prior mismanagement being a major contributor.
The economy not withstanding, Captain McKinney ‘hit the ground running’ with corporate financial support, acquired by established personal long term relationships, with dedicated community involvement from community members considered mandatory.
Recruiting Denver area residents to be supportive of what the Salvation Army/Red Shield Community Center is attempting to achieve is an integral part of Captain Ron and wife Roberta McKinney’s program rejuvenation plan of attack, and I myself have been asked to join what will be a pleasurable experience in seeing ‘The Shield’ regain it’s status in the community.
The ‘HEELS FOR THE SHIELD’ 5K walk/run has the full support of the Whittier Neighborhood Association, the Black Business Men’s Association, the Denver Police Department, along with members of the Five Points Business community, but there remain plenty of opportunities available for the what can easily be termed the ‘long run’ of establishing the Salvation Army/Red Shield Community Center to it’s prior prominence.
Not long ago, ‘THE SHIELD’ was recognized as one of East Denver’s safe places for children of all ages to gather and enjoy themselves, while watching prominent Denver athlete’s rise in status.
‘Back in the day’ when Alonzo Goggins, Michael Ray Richardson, David Bennett, and Chauncey Billups could be seen easily maneuvering through the gym while in the basement Larry Bonds, Lonnie Smith, Stevie Johnston and Ron Lyle would be helping youngsters correctly throw a left jab followed by a right hook, ‘THE SHIELD’ was a no nonsense establishment run under the guidance of ‘Mrs. Lucas’, who was loved by all.
Nowadays you may go downstairs and see ‘The Shield’ mainstays Melik ‘Hit Man’ Elliston, or Luvisa ‘Low-Low’ Matali working the heavy bag under the guidance of Coach Everette Elliston as easily as they mentor fellow boxers or center members who are part of ‘The Shield’ family.
Returning to those days won’t be that hard IF Captain Ron McKinney is given the needed support to make it happen, and beginning September 3rd at 9 AM or before, the process begins with community support a must.
Plans of a reading Book Club, a ‘Night of Roller Skating’, tutoring, and mentoring, along with boxing, karate, and basketball, are all long term goals of what the Salvation Army/Red Shield Program plans on doing in helping the kids from the Mitchell, Cole, Whittier, Five Points, and Curtis Park neighborhoods see as their community center.
Don’t leave the work to be done in helping ‘The Shield’ make it’s comeback left solely the job of persons such as Captain McKinney, get involved beginning on September 3rd, and continuing from there to pledge your ongoing support.
Information on the HEELS FOR THE SHIELD 5K walk/run, or sponsor inquiries can be easily obtained by calling 303-295-2107, or going directly to www.HeelsForTheShield.com.
‘IF YOU’RE NOT PART OF THE SOLUTION, YOU’RE PART OF THE PROBLEM’…
Stephen Johnson feature writes for INSIDE BOXING.com, BORICUA BOXING.com, and UNTIL THE NEXT ROUND.com.