By TAYLOR MURCHISON-GALLAGHER
The Chip’s Family Restaurant 5K Road Race to benefit the Petit Family Foundation will take place on Sunday, July 21, and will follow a scenic route through the town of Plainville.
Event registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. The Kid’s Fun Run, for children under eight years old, will begin at 8:30 a.m., and the 5K and fitness walk will begin at 9 a.m.
Robert and Gary Heslin, brothers and the former Plainville High School classmates of Dr. Petit, created the Petit Family 5K Road Race, first held in 2008.
During the 2018 Petit Family Road Race, Dean Yost of Canton was the first to cross the finish line in just over sixteen minutes. Yost was followed by Adam Gootnick of Unionville, Ryan O’Connor of Bristol, Emily D’Addario of Boston, and David Fiereck of Manchester.
In 2007, the Petit family—Dr. William Petit Jr., Jennifer Lynn Hawke-Petit,Hayley Elizabeth Petit (17), and Michaela Rose Petit (11)—fell victim to a fatal home invasion. The Petit Family Foundation was created to honor the memory of Jennifer, Hayley, and Michaela Petit. The Foundation was granted full 501c(3) status by the IRS in 2008.
All three Petit women were dedicated to giving back to their community, and in their honor several funds were established. This includes several scholarships such as one at Cheshire Academy in honor of Jennifer, Miss Porter’s School in honor of Hayley, Chase Collegiate School in honor of Michaela, and an annual award at Cheshire Academy in Jennifer’s honor for “a student distinguished by helping others and having matured the most over four years.”
A fund were also established at the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Connecticut Chapter – Hayley’s Hope and Michaela’s Miracle MS Memorial Fund, which is designated to provide scholarships to students with MS or whose parents have MS, and to fund family and caregiver education and respite-type programs.
“The Foundation’s funds are given to foster the education of young people – especially women in the sciences – to improve the lives of those affected by chronic illnesses, and to support the efforts to protect and help those affected by violence,” according to the Petit Family Foundation website.
Registration for the 5K and fitness walk cost $30 each. Register online by visiting, www.petitroadrace.com.