First Dr. Eric Dueno Memorial Run to be held September 9, 2017

Published 5:17 pm Friday, July 28, 2017

Bainbridge Runners will host a 5K on Saturday, September 9, 2017, in memory and celebration of the life of their friend, Dr. Eric E. Dueno. Race registration will begin at 6:30 a.m. and the race will start promptly at 8 a.m. Parking will be in the lot between the Humane Society and the softball fields in the Bill Reynolds Sports Park. Early registration fees are $20 for adults and $15 for youth; after August 25, race registration increases to $25 for adults and $20 for youth. Register early for a guaranteed race shirt!

One of the persons helping organize the run is Suzanne Angell, who explains Eric was an avid runner and a beloved member of Bainbridge Runners and Gulf Winds Track Club in Tallahassee. Eric was also an enthusiastic and very respected/loved Professor of Chemistry at Bainbridge State College. Eric passed away September 3, 2015, after suffering a sudden cardiac arrest on the City of Bainbridge Nature Trail while on a run with a few of his Bainbridge Runner friends who deeply miss him.    

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Angell was one of those in the group running with Eric, and was with him when he died on the trail. She says the unexpected, sudden death of her friend had a major impact on her life. “It definitely made me realize how short and fragile life can be, and how we should cherish each moment with our family and friends. Eric was a healthy, strong 47 year-old man; and for him to be alive and running with us one minute and dead within a few minutes was very hard to deal with, hard to understand,” she explains. “But I also have learned that you don’t stop living and doing the things you love because there are risks.  There are risks with just about anything we do; we could have a car accident on the way to work but we can’t stop driving.  Right after this happened, it was almost frightening to think about going out for a run, but I knew if I was going to run again, I had to get back out there immediately, or I might not at all.” She said she and Pam Wells, who was also with Eric at that time, had a half-marathon scheduled in Tennessee to run the weekend after it happened. “We knew Eric would want us to finish what we had been training for, so we did it for Eric. It also made me a more cautious runner; I took a CPR class shortly after this experience, I bought a “Road ID” armband with medical info and emergency contact info, I always run with my phone and we (Bainbridge Runners) watch out for each other by running as a group and always making sure at least one person stays with the slowest runner.”

Angell says Eric loved adventure! A few months before his death, he traveled to Spain to participate in the annual running of the bulls. The trip and a picture of him with a very close call with a bull actually inspired the logo for his memorial run. Eric also participated in many half marathons, full marathons and even a 50-mile run! He loved running long distances and he loved to talk about running to just about anyone who was willing to listen.

The race will start on Cox Avenue, near the Humane Society, and will run a short distance down Cox Avenue, turning onto the City of Bainbridge’s beautiful, wooded Nature Trail, and running past Eric’s memorial site. The race will end near the softball fields, across from the Bill Reynold’s Sports Complex. There will be overall male and female awards, master male and female awards and individual age group awards.

Proceeds will benefit The Wounded Warrior Project, Eric’s favorite charity. Bainbridge Runners are also striving to start a scholarship fund in Dr. Dueno’s honor for a Bainbridge high school or college student.

The Bainbridge community has been so supportive of the race and has been very generous with monetary sponsorships and donations. Gold Sponsors of the race include: Griffin’s Sales & Service, Shelly & Daniel Graham, Mr. Larry Miles, Country Financial, Lance Wilson, Agent, and Stone’s Home Centers.

Silver Sponsors include: Dean Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Care 360 Chiropractic & Physical Therapy, The Jagged Edge Hair Salon, June Faircloth/The Epic Race, Cooper’s Heating & Air, Gary Harrison Farms and Health Products and Yogurt Too. Coca Cola Bottling Company will supply drinks and banners.

A few sponsorships are left at this time and organizers would love to add another name to the back of the race shirts. Those interested in sponsoring, needing a race registration form or general information, please contact Suzanne Angell at 229-344-3182 or email at