GALAX, Va. (WDBJ7) Family and friends continue to raise money to honor Carroll County Deputy Curtis Bartlett, who died last year.
This weekend, January 27 and 28, they're getting some special help at a big fundraiser. It’s a version of the television competition series American Ninja Warrior
Several obstacles will be at the Galax Fire Department, very similar to the ones seen on TV. But there will also be a few ninjas from the show here to help out.
Ninja Warrior veteran Daniel Gil said in a Facebook video alongside fellow competitor Grant Mccartney, “Grant and I are very excited to announce are very excited to announce that we'll be coming to the Twin County area this January to help raise funds for the Fit2Serve 122 Campaign for the Curtis Bartlett Fitness Center.”
Joining Gil and Mccartney will be Maggi Thorne. All three were contacted by the Co-Owner of Galax Xtreme Fitness, Rick Whisenhunt, who ran the course on TV himself twice.
“Myself and my wife at Galax Xtreme Fitness, we did some outreach to those guys and when they found out about Curtis and the cause and what all was happening here, they jumped right on board,” he said.
In talking to Deputy Bartlett's family, support like this means the world to them.
His father Sam Bartlett said, “It's just extremely humbling. We have been blessed since the accident in March with the amount of love and support and prayers from people around the country.”
On top of running a race, each of the ninjas will deliver motivational speeches Saturday evening at Galax High School, in honor of Bartlett.
Emily Brown is a teacher at Galax High School and a member of the Curtis Bartlett Fitness Center Fundraising Committee.
She said, “I think it's great for our kids to hear that there are a lot of ways to be successful and sometimes it can be something as simple as fitness and it doesn't have to do with money. These people are very happy doing something fun and inspirational.”
Then they'll speak again at First Baptist Church Sunday, where Bartlett's father is Pastor
“Curtis's motto in life was to live inspired and it's almost as if his spirit is just as strong with us now as ever,” Bartlett explained.
There's only 60 to 80 spots total to be able to run the course. And two of those are already taken by Bartlett's father and his brother Caleb who will run the course together Saturday.
Tickets to run in the race are $30.00 per person if purchased ahead of time, can be bought here on the race’s Eventbright page. On the day of, tickets to run are $40.00. Watching the races is $7.00, unless you want to attend the motivational speeches, in which case it’s $10.00.
The races will be run from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. Then there will be a matchup between local fire fighters and police.
To learn more about the weekend fundraiser, click here to view the Facebook event page.