The first stage of the national selection of Ukrainian soldiers to participate in the 42nd Marathon of the US marines will start on 29 June and will continue until 30 July. A total of 10 participants is to be selected. The Marathon is to take place on 22 October in Washington. Such announcement was made by Gen. Volodymyr Havrylov, Ukraine’s military attache in the US, during a press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.
Kateryna Mashko, a representative of the Office of the Commissioner of the President of Ukraine for rehabilitation of the ATO participants, added that the first step is to apply to participate in the selection process is filing a registration form. The Form is available on a Facebook page of Ukraine’s team for the 2017 Marine Corps Marathon. Soldiers who participated in the ATO and were injured are the most odds-on favourite to win the selection. The selection results will be announced in July.
“Participation in a high profile event like this is the best publicity Ukraine can get abroad. […] After participation of Ukraine’s delegation in the Marathon last year, amount of programs that help Ukraine has increased significantly. Also, lots of people who were not even aware of an ongoing war in Ukraine before became active,” Volodymyr Havrylov added.
“For participants themselves, such events mean a rehabilitation process in the first place, an opportunity to prove themselves that they are still capable of something, and to set an example for others, those who lost faith,” said Vadym Maznichenko, the last year’s Marathon participant.
Stuart Taylor, a representative of the Allied Forces Foundation, stressed that “the reason this is critical that Ukraine’s forces come and join, and run side by side their allies is to demonstrate to the US and the rest of the world that we are all in this fight together. We will not stand for tyranny, terrorism, or aggressors.”