Story and Photos by Jason and Josie Koler
After hitting the porta pots, courtesy of WM, over 1,500 runners took off to make their way the bridge and to the finish line. Everyone who has an athletic muscle in their body was there; including KWPD Captain Scott Smith, the Florida Keys Aqueduct Roy Coley (who finished in the top ten in his age group, men ages 60 – 65) and county administrator Roman Gastesi. Gastesi has more energy than a pod of captive Dolphins. He was spotted after the race, playing a round of golf at Sombrero. Go Roman!
Businesswoman Natasha Barrona and her beau the famed realtor Jimmy Lane bonded over the bridge run, and of course, the crowd is not complete without Roger and Cindy McVeigh and company!
As other races made it to the finish line, a wave of excitement swept over the field when Roger McVeigh crossed the finish line with his arms and legs flailing like wet noodles.
The triumph of McVeigh single-handedly transformed the athletic competition to heartwarming story of how one man’s determination, sacrifice and ambition can shatter expectations and raise the spirits of a nation.
Stay Fit Studio’s most boisterous trainer doesn’t just talk the talk, but suits up for the run! Sean Guinan cools off with his running partner, James Gratton at the Sunset Grill.”My time was really good. 58:00,” says Sean. “Better than James. He ran in 62:00.”
There’s rarely a race in the Keys where you don’t see these faces. Keys Energy Services’ Cindy McVeigh, a.k.a the better half of Roger, bolted across the bridge for the first time, while Edie Kehoe whisked his way across the finish line for the 21 time! Pictured from left to right are Cindy, Nancy Harvey, Edie, Kimberly Banning, and Roger!
Monroe County Administrator Roman Gastesi crosses the historic 7 Mile Bridge several times a week. This past Saturday, he crossed it on foot.