The 8th annual Race the Helix® 5K race and 1 mile run/walk held on Saturday, October 6thbrought together over 300 participants and dozens more volunteers and spectators to raise awareness for the work done at the Greenwood Genetic Center (GGC) and the families they serve.
This year’s event was the largest to date, and for the second year in a row, the 1 mile walk was free thanks to Walk the Helix sponsors, Manley Garvin, LLC, and Stockman Oil.
Stephen and Jodi Shenal of Greenwood coordinate the annual event. The Shenals are parents to Tyler, 14, and Ryleigh, 7. Ryleigh has been under the Center’s care since being diagnosed with a rare chromosomal deletion shortly after she was born.
“The Greenwood Genetic Center has meant so much to us,” said Stephen. “I don’t know where we’d be without their support. We are so fortunate to have this facility right here in our own backyard.”
KJ Shorter of Waterloo also spoke at the event on GGC’s campus sharing his family’s gratitude for GGC. The Shorters have three sons, all of whom have been cared for at GGC. “We have known since the moment we walked through these doors that we were not alone.”
Race the Helix has grown into a statewide series of events raising over $30,000 each year to support the GGC Foundation which provides funds for many of the Center’s programs including autism research and genetic outreach education. The Foundation also assists the Center in providing genetic consultations and testing for families who are unable to afford these services.
Wes Baughcome of Ridge Spring and Ella Bassett of Greenwood were the overall male and female 5K winners of Race the Helix.
Race the Helix was the culmination of Gene Week, a series of events held at GGC designed to engage the community in the work happening at the Center. For more information on GGC or how you can support the GGC Foundation, please visit www.ggc.org.