Guardians Race for the Cure
By SSgt Robert Barney, 124th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Office
/ Published May 12, 2011
05/07/2011 - Boise, Idaho -- A cool spring morning greets thousands of pink clad runners and walkers as they mingle about preparing to participate in the 13th annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in Boise. The race, an annual tradition for those whose lives have been touched by cancer, as well as those just looking for an excuse "to get together " is why Jen Navarro started attending the annual event in 2007 with her family, which includes members of the Idaho National Guard.
The following year Navarro's grandmother, Vera Bowman, was diagnosed with cancer and the family took a break from the event. But since then the girls of the family have been attending the annual run/walk, bringing more people along every year. This year Jen's sister Carolyn Lyon helped to organize the official Idaho National Guard's team, the "Guardians," bringing together 12 other members from various units in both the Idaho Army and Air National Guard.
Lyon works at the United States Property Fiscal Office at Gowen Field, Boise, and has deep roots in Idaho's Guard family. Her father, Lt. Col. Steve Pflieger, works in the Idaho National Guard Joint Force Headquarters and her mother, retired Master Sgt. Glynda Pflieger, served 12 years in the Idaho Air National Guard. Among the new participates this year is Lt. Col. Pflieger, who walked in celebration of his mother-in-law Vera. This is Vera's second year walking it, saying that it " was hard last year, but this year is easier." Vera is not shy from adventure, last year she and two of her granddaughters got pink ribbon tattoos on their wrists, in celebration of her cancer experience. According to Vera after going through intravenous chemotherapy getting a tattoo "was nothing." Carolyn wants to get the word out earlier, hopefully bringing together more participants. "I think a lot of people are walking with their civilian employers," says Carolyn who would like to see a larger National Guard team next year.