Tillman Scholar encourages fellow students to join Pat's Run
Nathan Coury will take part in Pat’s Run on April 17 in honor of the former ASU football player and the values he stood for — honor, selflessness and the drive toward a greater purpose in life.
Coury, an ASU Tillman Scholar, celebrates in his life the traits that defined Pat Tillman.
“I really connected with those same values. I had been taught a lot of those things growing up,” Coury said.
Coury was awarded a $10,000 Tillman scholarship in 2008 after researching and applying for leadership scholarships. He learned more about Pat Tillman’s life and legacy after he joined ASU and was able to meet some of his family, visit his old locker room and playing field and get to know people who started the Pat Tillman Foundation.
“It was really cool hearing first-hand stories of some of the things that Pat did,” Coury said.
Coury is working this year to promote the run throughout ASU as a member of the Pat’s Run Volunteer Committee. Fellow ASU students share in his enthusiasm for celebrating Pat’s life after they learn about the run and how much fun it is.
“The students at ASU and anyone I talk to about the run just really seems to connect with it," Coury said. "It’s a great time and an awesome atmosphere celebrating the life of this unique and inspiring individual. It’s neat talking to some of these people who have never done it before who are really excited to see what it’s all about."
This is the third year that Coury will run the course for Pat’s Run, but this time he has recruited his parents, brothers and sister to run the race as well.
Coury is recruiting fellow ASU students for the run by erecting a banner across Palm Walk, handing out brochures and putting up posters. He’s working with other Tillman Scholars on making the run a sustainable event by working with ASU’s Green Team to outfit the run with recycling containers and donating leftover food from the run to area shelters.
“We’re trying to make it as low impact as possible,” said Coury, an economics and kinesiology double major at ASU who plans to attend graduate school to become an exercise physiologist researcher who studies why certain people are especially good at ultra marathons, what drives people to run so far, and how the mental and spiritual aspects of running affect people.
An ultra-marathon runner himself who regularly traverses distances of 50 kilometers or more, it won’t be hard for Coury to find a mental or spiritual reason to honor Tillman’s life during the run.
“The run was created to celebrate Pat’s life,” Coury said. “It’s really about what Pat represented and how can we live our lives better knowing what a great person he was.”
For more information on joining the run, go to www.pattillmanfoundation.org and click on “Pat’s Run.”