More than 300 supporters 'Run for Hope' - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

More than 300 supporters 'Run for Hope'

More than 300 people turned out to support the event. (Photo source: WLOX News) More than 300 people turned out to support the event. (Photo source: WLOX News)
Organizers say the best part of it all was seeing the support of other local children. (Photo source: WLOX News) Organizers say the best part of it all was seeing the support of other local children. (Photo source: WLOX News)
OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) -

Four charities for four local children who either lost their battle to cancer or are still fighting, were represented well Saturday morning for the first "Run for Hope" 5k.

With more than 300 volunteers and runners, the goal of the race was to not only raise money for the charities, but to also bring more awareness to local youth.

"The idea was kind of like a healthy competition between the four different teams. We had a team captain that helped gather people on their teams, and we just thought it would be fun to do something different," organizer Dawnn Rentrop said.

Rentrop worked with her husband James to make the idea come to life, and they say the best part of it all was seeing the support of other local children.

"It's good to see so many kids out here spending their day with us, their morning with us, for a good cause. For a great cause, for four great causes."

Natalie Hightower is one of the champions who lost her battle with brain cancer in September.

"The first thing I think of her is just smiling and laughing and saying 'Wow this is awesome! I can't believe everyone is doing this'," Natalie's mother Heather Goff said.

Goff says the best part is seeing the youth coming to support the great cause and getting the chance to realize that cancer doesn't discriminate on age. 

"For them to come out and support and be more aware because you know, it's terrible to say, but we weren't aware of the kids fighting and stuff like that before Natalie got cancer," Goff said.

The children who attended the event to show their support say they appreciate the lesson.

"It's a good experience and to come together and help the community," Ocean Springs Middle School student Alyssa Jones said.

First place went to #TeamAriana, second place went to #TeamNatalie, third place went to #TeamJaxon, and fourth place went to #TeamAshlyn.

The next event the Rentrop's will host is "The Eve of the Eve" on Dec. 30 at 7 p.m. at Coast Country, the Kress Live Building.

"It is a gala style, draw event that will celebrate New Years Eve one night early," Dawnn Rentrop described. "There will be a cash prize of $2,500 from the draw down tickets, as well as many great consolation prizes."

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