Run Rocklin to benefit schools, honor officer
Know and go
When: Sunday, April 7
Kids Fun Run: 7:45 a.m.
12K Run: 8 a.m.
5K Run/Walk: 8:20 a.m.
Kids one-mile run: 9:30 a.m.
Where: Johnson-Springview Park, 5480 Fifth Street
Cost: Adults: $34 prior to race day/$39 day of; 18 and under for 12K and 5K, $20 prior to race day/$25 day of; Kids Fun Run and Kids One-Mile Run:, free
City of Rocklin’s Health and Fitness Expo
When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 6
Where: Johnson-Springview Park, 5480 Fifth Street
Run Rocklin brings together the very community John and Marilyn Redding say their late son loved to serve and protect.
The 10th annual Run Rocklin will take place April 7 at Johnson-Springview Park and is expected to draw a crowd, according to race director/owner Larry Osborne.
In 2011 2,900 runners turned out, according to Osborne, and last year’s race netted 2,500 people.
Run Rocklin will be capped at 3,000 participants this year, according to Osborne, who encourages registering for the race prior to April 7 to ensure a spot in all four runs that day.
Proceeds from the race will go to both area schools and the Matt Redding Scholarship Foundation, Osborne said.
Matt Redding’s parents set up the scholarship foundation after the Rocklin police officer was struck and killed by a drunk driver on Oct. 9, 2005, said John Redding, Matt Redding’s father.
“He was protecting a four-car felony traffic stop by four officers at 4 a.m. and was asked to close the freeway at the Stanford Ranch and Galleria exit of Highway 65,” John Redding said. “Other drivers were going 15 and 20 mph, being very observant of the situation. The drunk driver was texting and drunk, closed in on the traffic ahead of him and swerved to the left.”
In their grief following the days after their son’s death, John and Marilyn Redding used the several thousand dollars donated to their family by the Rocklin community to open a scholarship fund.
John Redding said the money they received was for funeral costs, but since their son was killed in the line of duty, funeral costs were covered.
“In our tears and suffering, we knew this was Matt’s money and put it into an account and turned it into a memorial fund,” John Redding said. “The idea was to help students and people in the community in some way.”
John Redding said the foundation has helped “about 30 young people” from area high schools “continue their education in public safety,” since their son was passionate about his career as a police officer.
“He was made to be a police officer. He just had a calling to be a police officer and it fit him to a T because he enjoyed helping people,” Marilyn Redding said. “We knew how wonderful he was. He never gloated on things that he did, he just did things out of the kindness of his heart.”
Marilyn Redding said her son expressed interest in being a police officer from a young age, and loved the city he grew up in, Rocklin.
“This was his town, his city, and the most important thing to him was to keep bad guys off of the street,” John Redding said.
The Reddings would like to keep their son’s memory alive in the Rocklin community, something they said Run Rocklin helps do.
“It’s overwhelming and makes us have this really good feeling,” Marilyn Redding said of Run Rocklin. “It’s helped us keep Matt’s name alive in the community.”
The Reddings started receiving letters of gratitude after Matt passed away.
“After he was killed, people he had arrested wrote letters to us, and said what he’d said to them on the way up to Auburn (to the Placer County Jail) had changed their lives,” Marilyn Redding said. “People come up to us, mothers, fathers, and say he (Matt) arrested my son, nephew and so on, and he changed their lives and we’ll never forget.”
John and Marilyn Redding will attend the race, as they do every year.
“The run is wonderful, an incredible event. Larry Osborne does a wonderful job,” John Redding said. “It’s a beautiful celebration of our son’s life and a total family time.”
Osborne said he has developed a friendship with the Reddings over the years, as proceeds from the race have gone toward the Matt Redding Scholarship Foundation since the race’s fourth year.
Osborne’s son is a Rocklin police officer, and Osborne himself was a police officer in Berkeley in the 1970s.
The decision was made to donate race proceeds to Redding’s scholarship foundation in order to “fund something here versus some national organization or cause,” Osborne said.
“We’ve given Matt’s foundation $64,000 over the last seven years. It’s something the community can touch and relate to,” Osborne said. “We also give prize money to the school team with the biggest number of paid people on a team, which is another function of giving to others.”
Residents should participate in Run Rocklin, according to Osborne, because it’s a fun and healthy thing to do.
“It’s something fun to welcome springtime,” Os-borne said. “It’s an opportunity to go out and participate in Rocklin with neighbors, friends and family.”
Osborne said the event also gives residents “a sense of community.”
The weekend of April 6 and 7 will give community members plenty of opportunity to get outside, according to Osborne.
“The city has created a Saturday event and coupled it with us,” Osborne said. “We have the city’s Fun Fitness Expo on Saturday and our run on Sunday, so it’s a nice combo.”