Army SPC Lori Ann Piestewa was killed while defending the United States in Iraq. A hero, she was eventually found in a mass grave by Special Forces after being held prisoner and succumbing to her injuries. This isn’t a pretty picture, but it’s a stark reality that faces the men and women who serve our country. But let’s focus on that second part: women. This isn’t a political statement or invalidation, the truth is, women in the military continue to have to jump through extra hurdles and face challenges that men don’t in order to advance their careers. In the end, people such as Piestewa die heroes, but they also deserve more recognition. Thanks to The Piestewa Challenge and the wear blue: run to remember organization, SPC Lori Ann Piestewa and the other women who have served since 9/11 are gaining more respect for their sacrifices.
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wear blue: run to remember Honors Female Heroes With The Piestewa Challenge
For the third annual year, wear blue: run to remember is celebrating in March, also known as Women’s History Month, by honoring women Veterans that have passed away due to their service and the women in the military that continue to protect our nation through the Piestewa Challenge.
The challenge is named after SPC Lori Ann Piestewa, who was only 23 years old and made the ultimate sacrifice while fighting in Iraq. Her bravery would lead her to become the first Native American woman to die while engaged in combat on foreign soil, as well as the first woman to be killed in Iraq, in general.
Sadly, Piestewa would only be the first to pass on and since then, many more have followed. The ongoing battles in the Middle East have killed well over 150 women and continue to be a threat to all serving in the U.S. military as the domino effect of 9/11 continues to rear its ugly head.
177 Miles for 177 Fallen Female Veterans
Those participating in the Piestewa Challenge can do so on a virtual running platform. The event will consist of teams covering 177 miles to represent the 177 women Veterans that have given their lives so that all of us can maintain the American Dream.
There have been more than 400,000 women who have or are serving in the American Armed Forces throughout its many branches. The warfare they have and continue to endure may be evolving, but there is no mistake that the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks continue to be felt in the U.S. military to this day.
If you’re looking for a great way to commemorate the service of women in the military or just looking to participate in a worthy cause to get into shape, the Piestewa Challenge is a great event for anyone to join. Best of all, you have options for your exercise, so you can choose your own journey.
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Join wear blue: run to remember Online
The Piestewa Challenge commemoratives women in the military with an event aimed at remembering and honoring female Veterans. Anyone can enter the event and it’s free to join. From March 23-29 teams as large as eight people work together to cover 177 virtual miles.
Those participating can take on the challenge however they see fit. Any number of activities including running, hiking, biking, yoga, or whatever physical activity of choice is accepted. Progress is tracked from a user-friendly Racery portal.
The portal is more than just counting miles, though. You can also socialize with your team throughout the Piestewa Challenge to help boost everyone’s spirit through positive comments and pictures of your workout.
Registration is open until March 22, so now is the time to get your team together. You’ll need a team name and to select your activities to collectively work towards the 177 miles over the week-long virtual reality running challenge. Wearing blue is highly recommended.
If you’re in the area or looking to travel, the event will also involve real-life events. On Piestewa Peak in Phoenix, AZ, SPC Lori Piestewa’s Hopi, and other Native communities come together to remember her legacy, other Indigenous women, and all women who have served our country.
Remember her and the 177 women killed by participating in a communal event that’s pushing for change. By joining this effort, you are also recognizing the sacrifices of women from Indigenous and other underrepresented communities. Together, we can show we value and appreciate all women in the military.
The Piestewa Challenge 2023 registration is open. Head to the Racery portal and join wear blue run to remember as we all remember the sacrifices women in the military have been providing to our country while protecting us and our allies.
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