This weekend my dad and I went to Arizona for the Pat Tillman Foundation run. A few months ago, I read Where Men Win Glory by Jon Krakauer. It chronicles Pat’s life, decision to join the United States Army, his tragic death and legacy.
My dad served in the military for 28 years, so after I finished the book I gave it to him to read (even though it was Zach’s…). I thought he would enjoy it and it would give us something good to talk about.
We were both moved by Pat’s story and how well Krakauer handled the sensitive, heartbreaking material. It wasn’t an easy story to tell or read, the circumstances around Pat’s death under friendly fire are terrible, but Krakauer did a great job of focusing on his life.
In February, for my dad’s birthday, I signed both of us up for the race and bought plane tickets to Tempe, YAY for daddy-daughter trips!
Our trip got off to a rocky start, Friday evening we were taking a cab to the hotel and got into an accident. Luckily, no one was injured, though things could have been a lot worse if our driver didn’t break when he did. Once we settled safely in our room, we prepared for an early morning. The race started at 7, so we’d be leaving the hotel before 6.
The race was awesome! Over 28,000 people came out for the event. I’m so happy I got to spend this time with my dad. During the race, we even ran a little ways, something we didn’t think we were going to be able to do because of my dad’s injured knee.
After the race, we napped and iced my dad’s knee so that he doesn’t limp around all next week. After our recovery, we went to Rula Bula‘s for dinner and drinks. During Pat’s lifetime, he frequented Rula Bula. Right before his deployment he gave his glass to the bartender and asked him to keep it there for him until he came back. Since Pat never made it back, the bar hosts Pints for Pat; the proceeds go the Tillman Scholarship fund.
We have one more day here, tomorrow we’re going to a Native American PowWow and an African drum circle on campus, both should be fun events, though the most important part of this trip is some great daddy-daughter time before Zach and I move to Seattle.