COLUMBIA, S.C. – Twenty-seven deputies with the Richland County Sheriff’s Dept. (RCSD) joined other Midlands-area runners in the EIGHTH ANNUAL QUARRY CRUSHER RUN at the Vulcan Materials Quarry off Georgia Street in Columbia’s Olympia neighborhood, Sat., Mar. 23. And two of the 27 deputies earned second-place honors in both men’s and women’s categories.
“We participate in this run every year,” says Maj. Harry Polis, Jr., RCSD Operations Division. “It gives our guys an opportunity to raise money for a good cause, and it’s obviously in-line with Sheriff Leon Lott’s mission of keeping everybody physically fit and healthy.”
Good cause indeed. All proceeds from the Quarry Crusher Run benefit the S.C. National Guard’s Youth ChalleNGe Academy, a second-chance program designed to help at-risk teenagers develop the necessary values, ethics, life-skills, education, self-esteem and self-discipline to succeed as an adult.
Among the 27 participating deputies were several members of RCSD’s Special Response Team (SWAT Team). The award-recipients were Deputy Brandon Simmons who placed 2nd in the 25-29 age group for males, and Reserve Deputy A.J. Giles who placed 2nd in the 20-24 age group for females.
“All others also finished strong,” says Polis.
The Quarry Crusher Run is a national series in which participants run to the bottom of a stone quarry and back to the top. According to the Quarry Crusher Run’s website, the event features a “Single Crusher run (around 3.7 miles) or a Double Crusher (7.4 miles)” both of which “wind down an average 10-percent grade and as much as 18-percent in areas” surrounded by granite cliffs leading to the quarry floor. The descent from top to bottom is 400 to 600 feet. Then the runner has to make it back to the top.
– W. Thomas Smith Jr. is a special deputy with the Richland County Sheriff’s Dept.