3:41 p.m. PDT May 7, 2016
Damniohn Demarest, 10, is an Awesome 3000 veteran.
Even though this year was his fifth year participating in the annual Salem-Keizer Education Foundation fundraiser, he’s been working hard the past few weeks preparing for the day.
On the morning of the run, Damniohn went with his family to a school track to run laps. He fueled up with a banana and granola for breakfast.
He wore his sister’s rainbow, knee-high socks to the stadium, though he originally planned to spray-paint his hair and wear paint on his face.
Running with other fourth grade boys, Damniohn was excited. He ran the 2000 meter track alongside his brother Cory and his close friend, Noah.
He had practiced keeping a steady pace until the end when he would sprint.
“That’s exactly what I did,” Damniohn said, sporting his 589 numbered bib.
He said his favorite part was the end, sprinting to the finish line.
His family was cheering him on and chanting as he crossed.
“Everyone was by my side,” he said.
Natalie Pate is the education reporter for the Statesman Journal. Contact Natalie at npate@StatesmanJournal.com, (503) 399-6745, or follow her on Twitter @Nataliempate, on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/nataliepatejournalist or on the Web at nataliepate.com