Reno Marine to run 70 miles to help raise funds for other veterans

by NATASHA VITALE

Above, Charles Padilla, right, British Royal Marine Mark Ormrod, front, and their team finish the Gumpathon, a run across America, on the Santa Monica pier. / Photo provided by Charles Padilla

Above, Charles Padilla, right, British Royal Marine Mark Ormrod, front, and their team finish the Gumpathon, a run across America, on the Santa Monica pier. / Photos provided by Charles Padilla

When some people retire, they spend a lot of time relaxing. Not Charles Padilla.

The former U.S. Marine of 29 years is set to run 70 miles, from Coleville, Calif., to Virginia City, beginning Tuesday to raise money for the Marsoc Wounded Warrior Foundation, which supports U.S. veterans. The run, part of the “Miles for Marsoc” campaign, begins Tuesday and is scheduled to end Wednesday.

Padilla, 49, of Cold Springs will be running by himself for the first 50 miles and expects to be joined by two other runners toward the end of the run.

“The reason that I do these runs is to make people aware that the wounded warriors need our support,” said Padilla, also known by his nickname, “Chunks,” given to him as a young Marine. “The more involved we are in this, the more we can give back.”

Padilla was a reconnaissance Marine and also spent some time in the special forces. His inspiration to get involved with the Marsoc Foundation came from watching friends from the Marine Corps participate in charity events to help veterans.

“It helps individuals who come back from war wounded,” Padilla said. “If they have a family, the foundation helps the family financially and provides special equipment wounded veterans might need.”

Charles Padilla and British Royal Marine Mark Ormrod pause in Gallup, N.M., during the Gumpathon.

Charles Padilla and British Royal Marine Mark Ormrod pause in Gallup, N.M., during the Gumpathon.

He’s run in several other extreme runs for charity, including the Tour de Forces in 2011, which is 30 marathons in 36 days. Padilla has stayed in shape by running and biking since leaving the Marine Corps in 2011. To prepare for Tuesday’s event, he has been doing 15- to 18-mile runs every day.

“This is my main focus right now,” Padilla said in an email. “This is what I love to do.”

The Veterans of Foreign Wars, along with the Washoe Club, are also supporting Padilla on his run, and Padilla also will be participating in the Fourth of July parade in Virginia City for the foundation.

“I think the run is extremely important for getting support for wounded warriors,” said Sean Peterson, post commander of the VFW Post 8071 in Virginia City. “He does this to support the veterans, and he uses his own retirement money to do the runs in order to educate people about the situation and how they can help. He’s doing an outstanding job.”

This article was also published here through our journalism partnership with RGJ Media



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