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More Than 800 Runners Gather in Oxford for Great 38 Race

Story contributed by broadcast students Carson McKinney and Megan Suttles

Last weekend, more than 800 runners gathered in Oxford to participate in the third annual Great 38 race for the Roy Lee “Chucky” Mullins Memorial Scholarship Endowment.

Run Oxford—a community organized running group—sponsored the event, which President Marvin King said is modeled in honor of former Ole Miss defensive back Chucky Mullins.

“We wanted to find something unique to Oxford and would be a draw,” King said. “Most races are three miles or six miles, so we did the three mile race and the eight mile race. We thought because people are so familiar with the Chucky Mullins story, and he was number 38, that would all tie together.”

Roy Lee “Chucky” Mullins, who wore No. 38 on his jersey, played football at Ole Miss until he was paralyzed during a game on Oct. 28, 1989. Mullins returned to classes the following year and died one year later, becoming a symbol of strength and determination at Ole Miss.

Before establishing his organization, King noted a lack of running events in Oxford, so he established Run Oxford and the Great 38 to create community interest in running.

Oxford local and Canebrake farm owner Charlie Dawson came in first place in Sunday’s half marathon race, completing the marathon in just over one hour and fourteen minutes. Dawson said he advocates participation in races like the Great 38 to challenge oneself and finds Mullins’ story impactful.

“Chucky Mullins was paralyzed right out here on the field and didn’t live too long after that,” Dawson said. “He kept fighting and never gave up. That’s a good spirit.”

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