ABINGTON, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) – The morning of Sunday, September 19 marked the final time participants gathered for the Jeff Coombs Memorial Road Race.
The 5K run and walk, which started in 2002, honored the man from Abington who was on board American Airlines Flight 11 when it crashed into the north tower of the World Trade Center in New York City on September 11, 2001.
Jeff’s widow, Christie Coombs, is the Chairperson of the Jeff Coombs Memorials Foundation and an organizer of the race.
She said it was a difficult to make this the last year of the race and admitted the day will be more emotional than usual.
“It’s going to be even more bittersweet because it’s going to be like saying goodbye to an old friend,” she said.
The foundation has raised more than $1 million to benefit military children. Over the past 20 years, Christie said she and her family have learned a lot “about the community’s desire to remember and come together in a positive light around such a tragic event.”
Coombs was not concerned about people forgetting her husband or other 9/11 victims. She just had one simple request.
“When you go to those memorials, pick out a name or two, say that name out loud. As long as that name is being said out loud those people are being remembered.”
The race also honored the other Massachusetts victims of 9/11.
WBZ’s Kim Tunnicliffe (@KimWBZ) spoke more with Christie on her decision to end the race: