"A is for Airborne.
I is In the sky.
R is for Rambo.
B is for Born to fly.
O is for On the go.
R is for Ranger.
N is for Never quit.
E is for Everyday
The sound of the rhythmic cadence reverberated inside Camp Aguinaldo in the early morning hours of May 20. The fun run organized by the Officer Candidate School Alumni Association, Inc. (AFPOCSAAI) has just started and already the esprit de corps of the running soldiers was in full display for everyone to see and hear. Of special interest to the Bicolano Penguin were 2 companies of officer candidates running in formation, each as a single unit; the Alpha Company and Bravo Company. To keep all the members of the company running in step at the same pace, the military cadence is sung. The sound of this military cadence was like a siren song that had me seduced to join them running in formation.
Why not? Let me see how long the Bicolano Penguin, a non-military golden boy at that, can last running with a company. I said to myself as I gleefully run in step with the Alpha Company. The pace was moderate and I was feeling good. 500 meters went by and I was still with Alpha Company. I felt young again, exuberant with the feeling that I could match stride per stride very fit military personnel who were almost 3 decades younger than me. Then another 500 meters happened soon enough. But after a kilometer of running, my Galloway run walk instincts kicked in and I had to transition from run to walk. Too bad I was not a high ranking officer who could have ordered a change in pace from moderate to slow. So as I started my walk, the rest of the Alpa Company passed me by.
|Stretching before the start. Even in warm up exercise, the officer cadets were in formation.|
|The Bicolano Penguin talking to a fellow ultra marathoner, Cindy of Ayala Triads, before the start.|
|Start of the 10km fun run.|
|The Alpha Company starting...|
|...with Bravo Company coming in next.|
|Soon, I was looking at the backs of Bravo Company.|
|While others made a mad dash for the finish line...|
|...the Alpha Company was still magnificently in formation as it neared the finish line.|
|The Bravo Company was also still in formation in crossing the finish line, albeit in a more gung-ho manner.|
|A family of 3 nearing the finish line.|
|A dog and its friend about to cross the finish line|
|Zumba after the fun run.|
|BP with some members of the Alpha Company at the finish line.|
|Podium finishers with officers of the AFPOCSAAI.|
|Camaraderie very much alive in the awarding ceremonies.|
Speaking of the One Run OCS, it is a very worthwhile activity. The AFPOCSAAI in partnership with Team Understanding, Inc. organized the OCS Alumni fun run with the theme: "ONE RUN, ONE OCS." It is a fund raising activity and the proceeds will benefit the members of AFPOCSAAI who are wounded-in-action (WIA) in the performance of their duties in the field and the major service Officer Candidate Schools for the improvement of their training materials/equipment. According to LTC. Edgar Allan Villanueva (Vice President of the Phil. Army Chapter and Secretary of AFPOCSAAI Nationals) there were more than 600 runners who participated in the fun run.
|Some members of the fun run organizing team. Congrats for a good job.|
In the words of DND Secretary Delfin Lorenzana in the OCS joint graduation ceremony last Dec 13, 2016 - "You will be in the forefront; you will be putting your lives on the line, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I wish you good luck to your new career and I hope that all of you will reach the pinnacle of your respective military careers."
As the latest flashpoint in Marawi City is showing, our military soldiers are professional and brave in protecting our country and countrymen. They are very much worthy of our prayers, our respect and our help.
The ONE RUN OCS fun run is one such opportunity where citizens of the Republic can offer a helping hand to the brave men and women of the AFP. Or literally, a helping pair of running feet.
Hopefully, with God's grace and the hard work of the AFPOCSAAI, there will be another running of the ONE RUN OCS.
|BP with RJ Knight Runner of Running Photographers.|
Photo Credits: Running Photographers