A Good Run through The National WWII Museum
As it honors the service and sacrifices of the Greatest Generation, The National WWII Museum strives to pass on the war generation’s values, celebrating young people whose actions and goals reflect our country’s highest ideals.
In that spirit, we were thrilled to have a young gentleman by the name of Steve Good put the Museum on his Iron Phi journey. Started by Phi Delta Theta International Fraternity the Iron Phi athletic program seeks to strengthen and support the organization’s brotherhood and to raise money to support The ALS Association’s research to find a cure against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis disease. What started as a young man’s solution to a mid-life crisis at 30 years old in 2012, Good developed an Iron Phi challenge for himself where he traveled to eight states in eight days riding a Megabus and running over 60 miles throughout his journey’s pit stops raising money for his fraternity and ALS. Now Good is 32 years old and has been doing these runs every year.
On this year’s run, Good has been running and busing throughout the South gathering his friends for a good run and stopping at meaningful landmarks along the way. What sparked his stop at the Museum during his run through New Orleans on October 22, 2014 was because his grandfather, Tech Sergeant Floyd Eugene Harmon, was previously featured in one of our special exhibits and books Loyal Forces: The American Animals of World War II.
During World War II, Good’s grandfather Harmon stayed on the Home Front training dogs for service in the Dogs for Defense program at Fort Robinson, Nebraska. Throughout the war years over 10,000 dogs were trained for war and nearly 3,000 of them were sent overseas. Harmon’s duties included receiving dogs donated by civilians and training them to be used in the war effort. The dogs trained were used for various types of work, from sled and pack, to sentry and roving patrol, messenger, scout, and mine detection work.
When Good ran through the Museum to take his obligatory snap of a landmark and to present a thank you to that leg’s supporter, he described this stop as the highlight of his trip. We presented him with the book Loyal Forces opened to the images of his grandfather training dogs during WWII for his picture. He quickly got his shot and ran off to his next stop in town at Tulane University. Later on his blog, he wrote about his quick stop at the Museum being so meaningful to him that “luckily the sweat running down my face hid the tears.”
To support and learn more about Steve Good’s Iron Phi, follow him here: http://agoodrun.com/
Discover more about the animals that served in World War II here.
To purchase the Museum’s book Loyal Forces: The American Animals of World War II written by the Museum’s own Collections staff members, Toni M. Kiser and Lindsey F. Barnes, click here.
Post by Katie Odell, Social Media Coordinator at The National WWII Museum.