OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (WLOX) - A special 5K ahead of Veterans Day honored one of South Mississippi’s own fallen soldiers Saturday morning.
Racers laced up their sneakers to take part in the Sean M. Cooley 5K at Fort Maurepas Park in Ocean Springs. It’s an event that is held each year to remember the Jackson County man.
MSgt. Sean M Cooley was killed in the line of combat in 2005 while fighting for freedom in Iraq. He deployed with the 150th Engineer Battalion in 2005. In his civilian life, he worked as a nurse at Singing River Health Systems.
His family organized the 5K and established a nursing school scholarship in his memory. Over the years, they’ve helped more than two dozen students with military affiliation pay for school.
“Knowing that we have support from the community and other people surrounding us, it just really helps bring us during the times when our spouses are gone,” said Tiffany Austin, who is one of the recipients of the Sean M. Cooley scholarship fund.
Another recipient of the scholarship said her husband is deployed and the money she received for college has helped keep her busy and keep her spirits up as she works toward graduation in May.