By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Destiny Cheek

Sailors assigned to the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN-74) volunteered to assist at the 4th annual 5K Miracle Run at South Kitsap Regional Park, Aug. 10.

The event raised money for Children’s Miracle Network and Seattle Children’s Hospital. Founded in 1983, Children’s Miracle Network is an international non-profit organization that raises funds for children’s hospitals, medical research and community awareness of children’s health issues.

According to Religious Programs Specialist 1st Class Kathleen Matthews, Stennis’s community relations (COMREL) project coordinator, Stennis was previously offered participation in the annual fundraiser, but was unable to participate due to the ship’s demanding deployment schedule.

“This COMREL was a part of our community outreach,” said Matthews, from Port Orchard, Wash. “It’s not just about us as a command, but us as a family, and Kitsap County is our extended family.”

Stennis Sailors assisted with set-up, registering runners, ensuring water stations were stocked and post-run cleanup.

“I really enjoyed myself and look forward to participating in this fundraiser next year,” said Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Isiah Burns, from Philadelphia.

Stennis is currently undergoing a Docking Planned Incremental Availability (DPIA) maintenance period at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility.

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Runners cross the finish line as Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Isiah Burns, from Philadelphia, directs them to the tagging station during a 5K run. (U.S. Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Matt Martino/Released)