The second annual First Noelle Memorial 5K is set to be held at St. Louis Catholic School in Nokomis on Saturday, Dec. 7. The yearly 5K is held in memory of Ayden Noelle O'Malley, the daughter Den and Rosalind O'Malley of Nokomis. The run is hosted during the month of her birth, December, as a way to honor, remember and celebrate her life.
On Jan. 22, 2018, O'Malley tragically passed away at the age of 14. The Nokomis teen experienced a brain hemorrhage from an undetected arteriovenous malformation (AVM) on Jan. 18, 2018, while on the March for Life trip with her mother and several others. O'Malley was known for her infectious personality and having a smile that matched. She adored young children and was known as a buddy to all at the St. Louis Catholic School (SLS), where she was a student from the time she was three years old. She was also an active member of the St. Louis Catholic Church where she volunteered as a server, reader, choir member, and at numerous parish and school fundraisers.
Registration for the First Noelle Memorial 5K will begin at 8:30 a.m. at St. Louis Catholic School, located at 509 East Union Street in Nokomis, with the run set to start at 9:30 a.m. Participants may also join the 5K virtually - sign up, pick a route and post photos on the First Noelle 5K page on Facebook.
Registration fees for the 5K are set at varying levels dependant on the type of shirt participants want: $25 fees include a T-shirt, $30 fees include a long-sleeve shirt, $35 fees include a crew neck sweatshirt or a hoodie.
Those who do not wish to participate in the 5K may still purchase shirts. Participants are asked to register by Friday, Nov. 15, in order to receive the shirts in time for the 5K. All checks may be made payable to St. Louis Catholic School.
The proceeds from the run will be donated to the St. Louis Catholic School to fund scholarships. The Ayden O'Malley Pro-Life Angel scholarship helps others to attend the March for Life in January. The Ayden O'Malley Memorial Scholarship is awarded to provide financial assistance for students who wish to attend St. Louis School. Last year, two high school students were awarded a scholarship to attend the March for Life protest and five families were awarded funds to help off set their cost of tuition at SLS.
For more information on the First Noelle 5K contact the 5K organizers Melissa Engelman at 217-823-1311, Megan Mehochko at 217-414-9957 or Shandy Bertolino at 217-825-6117 or via email at firstnoellesisk8.org. Registration forms can be found online at St. Louis Catholic School's page on Facebook.