Father's Day Chicago 5K honors George Floyd, brings awareness to Black men's mental health

ByMaher Kawash via WLS logo
Sunday, June 19, 2022
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A Father's Day 2022 5K run honored George Floyd and brought awareness to Black men's mental health struggles.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Runners were hitting the pavement Sunday for the greater good.

Two local running clubs brought together about 50 people on Chicago's South Side to knock out a 5K on Father's Day.

Every step forward was meant to bring awareness to the mental health issues Black men face every day, gun violence and emotional disturbance.

"It's a way of us getting back into the community and kind of show people health and wealth at the same time," Daron Hurst said.

The run also honored George Floyd, raising funds for his mental health memorial foundation.

RELATED: Chicago Real Men Cook event returns for Father's Day, Juneteenth

Activists are hoping to decrease barriers and stigma in seeking treatment as well as implement mental health and healing justice workshops.

"We just need to always come together, show some positivity as the older generation to forge for the younger generation," Greg Conner said.

Efforts like that also hit close to home for the Black women supporting these men every day.

"Our Black men, they're fathers every day. They don't need this one day. They are fathers every single day. They're not just fathers to their children. They help the community and help children who don't have fathers," Dominique Sabbs said.

When it comes to the 3.1 miles of this 5K, some of these runners really made it look easy, wrapping up and barely breaking a sweat. But it's actually a bit harder than you may think.

"See, from a runner's perspective, the shorter the distance the harder you're supposed to run it. So a 5K is really hard, hard work," Greg Conner said.