The evening of Jan. 7, 2013, Megan Kays (’12) posted on Facebook:
“3,228.5 miles biked
883.88 miles ran
3 charity bike rides
2 sprained ankles
1 pelvic stress fracture
Couldn’t ask for a better life!”
While she was running the next day, she was hit by a truck and died from her injuries, less than a month after having graduated early from Clarion University with a bachelor’s degree in business marketing.
Josh Domitrovich was home on break when he heard about Kays’ death. Domitrovich said he and Kays had become friends during a conference.
“I first met her in 2011 when we went to Miami for a national conference on student leadership. Seven of us went, and we found ourselves up every night talking about life. She and I related so well – we connected closely,” he said. “My philosophy is that when I pass, I would want to be remembered, and that’s what I wanted to do for her. She was such a beautiful person, not only on the outside, but on the inside. I wanted her legacy to carry on.”
Those who knew Kays say her passion for physical fitness and community service was apparent. She could regularly be seen running or biking around Clarion or her hometown of Grove City. She was running near her Grove City home, training for the Pittsburgh Marathon, when she died.
Domitrovich joined with students Rachel Farkas and Dan LaFata, who was close to Kays and knew her parents, Jeff and Michelle Kays, to plan a 5K and 10K race in her honor. Cody Rapp (’11) is handling funds. Her parents requested that all proceeds from the race, the Meg 5 and 10 Kays, go to charity. Helping others was another of Kays’ passions.
Together they designed a race logo that incorporates Kays’ name, her life span, and her love of running and bicycling in a footprint. The logo appears on the front of the race T-shirts, with her final Facebook post on the back.
“The footprint not only means running, but that she made an impact on a lot of lives,” Domitrovich said. “We chose yellow so when people wear these, they’ll be seen. Because of the tragedy, we wanted to make it bright, for safety.”
Domitrovich said people smile when they see the T-shirt. “I like to think their smile is their vision in their eyes of her.” Through T-shirt sales the group has already raised $1,600 for charity.
Registration begins at 8 a.m. May 11 at the corner of 6th Avenue and Wood Street for the Meg 5 and 10 Kays, and the race starts at 9 a.m. For information and registration form, visit www.themeg5and10kays.wordpress.com.
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