Virtual run held in Richmond to honor life of Ahmaud Arbery

Virtual run held to honor life of Ahmaund Arbery

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT/AP) - Friday, runners across the country and around the world took part in a virtual run event called, We Run With Ahmaud, to honor the life of 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery who was killed while going out for a run.

The event found it’s legs in Richmond where the local Facebook group RVA Runners encouraged its members to participate in the movement by posting images of their run to social media.

“I hope that everybody that does it, whether they run, skip or walk, that they’re sending their energy to friends and family that are being impacted by this,” the group’s administrator Chris Mason said. “It needs to be front of mind I think. We need to think about it and see what we can do to make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

A white father and son accused of fatally shooting a black man on a residential Georgia street were arrested Thursday and charged with murder and aggravated assault after a national outcry that no arrests had been made, authorities said.

Gregory McMichael, 64, and Travis McMichael, 34, will be booked into the Glynn County Jail, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said in a news release.

Ahmaud Arbery was killed Feb. 23 just outside the port city of Brunswick. The men who pursued him in a pickup truck told police they believed Arbery was a burglar.

Runners participated by using the hashtag #irunwithmaud and were encouraged to run 2.23 miles mirroring February 23, the day Arbery was killed. The run was held May 8, which would have been Arbery’s 26 birthday.

“If it makes people feel a little bit like they can do something because we don’t know what to do about this. It happened in Georgia, but it can happen everywhere,” Crystal Koch said.

Koch is an administrator with RVA Runner. She hopes that long after the running stops people continue having the tough conversations to effect real change.

“Starting tomorrow, I hope we don’t wake up and go back to the way things were, I hope we still have these conversations,” Koch said.

“It’s an uncomfortable conversation and as a white male, I don’t anticipate having to possibly get shot while I’m out running and that’s unfortunate that people have to worry about that,” Mason said. “Black Americans are having this kind of stuff happen to them and we need to work towards somehow stopping the insanity.”

Saturday, May 9 at 10 a.m. the Afrikana Film Festival is encouraging people to lace up for another virtual run this time running 2.6 miles in honor of Arbery’s 26th birthday. They are encouraging participants to run, walk, or jog in a safe space either indoors or outdoors and post a photo or video of using the hashtags #RunWithMaud and #RunWithMaudRVA.

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