• Marissa Elman

Seaside Semper Five Marine Corps charity 5K race returns

Seaside Semper Five Marine Corps charity 5K race returns
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SEASIDE HEIGHTS – Runners raced along the Jersey Shore on Saturday, taking part in the Seaside Semper Five, an annual run to benefit a charity that supports Marines and their families.

The 5K run started and finished at the Beachcomber Bar and Grill. Entry fees go to benefit the Marine Raider Foundation, which supports active duty and medically retired Marine Raiders and their families. There was also a one-mile fun run.

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This year’s race was dedicated to Capt. Brian McNally, a Marine from Morris County who served in Afghanistan and later became a Marine reservist and a New Jersey state trooper. McNally was killed in a 2018 automobile accident as he was returning from a predeployment exercise during reserve duty in Pennsylvania.

The race is also notable because it was once the target of a would-be terror attack. The 2016 race was about to start when a pipe bomb-type device, which had been placed in a trash can, exploded at the corner of D Street and Ocean Avenue in Seaside Park. See the video below to learn more.

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Ocean County Prosecutor spokesman Al Della Fave summarizes the events surrounding bomb going off just prior to the Semper Five 5K race in Seaside Park. Staff Video by Peter Ackerman

Because of a large number of late registrants, the start of the Semper Five had been delayed, and no one was injured when the bomb exploded. 

Ahmad Khan Rahimi, an Afghanistan-born U.S. citizen, was charged with planting the bomb. He was later convicted of subsequent bombings in Manhattan’s Chelsea district and given two life sentences.

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