The third annual Michelle's Memorial 5K will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 15, in Middleport. Registration will begin at 8 a.m. at the Middleport Firehall, and the starting line will be close by on Mill Street. The course will be along the scenic Erie Canal.
Michelle A. Bewley passed away suddenly in a car accident in 2006 at the age of 29. She was a graduate of Royalton-Hartland Class of 1994. During her years at Roy-Hart, she was a member of the field hockey, swimming and track teams, as well as a member of student government, National Honor Society, the school orchestra and chorus, and countless other organizations.
Not only was Michelle intense and devoted to sports, but she carried that determination and motivation out in all aspects of her life. In addition, Michelle had a heart for giving back to the community.
The mission of Michelle's Memorial is to provide a scholarship at Roy-Hart for graduating seniors, encourage sports in the community, and remember a loving daughter, sister and friend.
Last year's $2,000 award went to a deserving senior, Melissa Zakrzewski, who has begun her first year at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.
Although the exact requirements of the scholarship vary from year to year based on participation, the goal is still the same: to reward a student who took part in music and sports, excelled academically and portrayed a whole lot of heart both on and off the field - just as Michelle did in all four years of high school.
Since 2006, Michelle's Memorial has awarded nine seniors at Roy-Hart. Organizers plan to continue rewarding students for their achievements for many years to come.
For seven years, Michelle's family funded the Michelle A. Bewley Scholar Athlete Award out of pocket. In 2012, Michelle's siblings decided to start a 5K in her memory. All proceeds would benefit the scholarship from that point forward.