Veteran Dan Lasko, wounded in Afghanistan, wins 10K race at Marine Corps Marathon

Runners participate in the 2010 Marine Corps Marathon.
By Jim Hage and Carl Little
Special to The Washington Post
Sunday, October 31, 2010; 11:19 PM

Dan Lasko, 27, a Marine veteran who was wounded in Afghanistan in 2004, won the fifth Marine Corps Marathon 10K on Sunday. The race started simultaneously with the marathon but on the Mall and ended at the marathon finish line in Arlington. A member of the Wounded Warrior program, Lasko finished ahead of 10,000 registered runners.

Alemtsehey Misganaw, 30, from Ellicott City, won the women's race. . . .

The men and women of the U.S. Marine Corps swept the challenge cup competition, which annually pits members of the Marines against the British Royal Navy/Royal Marines. First Lt. Sean Barrett, 25, led the way for the men by finishing third overall in his first-ever marathon in 2:24:08. Maureen Carr, a 29-year-old from Alexandria, was the top female finisher in 3:05:41.

Masked man

Jeremy Soles, a former U.S. Marine, set a Guinness world record by becoming the fastest person to finish a marathon while wearing a gas mask. Soles, 33, completed the 26.2-mile course in a chip-timed 4:29:01.

He ran out of water halfway through the race, but was given liquids and gels through a tube. The mask restricts a person's normal rate of breathing by 25 to 30 percent, Soles said.

After crossing the line, the tattooed Soles removed the black mask that stretched from his eyes to his chin and hugged and saluted Cpl. John Michael Peck, who was seated in a wheelchair nearby. Peck, 25, lost his arms and legs in Afghanistan in May.

"We run in honor of the men and women who have paid the ultimate price, but today we run for Corporal Peck," Soles said. "It was my honor to come out here and represent" him.

Valiant effort

Rusty Murphy, 49, from Grapevine, Tex., was walking as quickly as he could along Constitution Avenue 17 miles and more than four hours into the race in an effort to clear the 14th Street Bridge and the 20-mile mark before race officials closed the course. "I'm hurting," Murphy said. "My stomach is hurting, my feet are aching. I probably didn't train enough and I'm probably not going to make it. But if they let me, I'll try to keep going past the bridge." . . .

As part of the tie-in with the 2,500th anniversary of the Battle of Marathon and the legend of Pheidippides' famous run, Dimitri Kyriakides, the son of 1946 Boston Marathon winner Stylianos Kyriakides, helped officiate the race. Kyriakides used his victory to help focus attention on Greece as it recovered from Nazi occupation and the ravages of World War II.

The marathon is recognized around the world as a symbol of equality, brotherhood and fair competition, Kyriakides said. It represents the best of what humans aspire to.

The wiener takes it all

Chris Farmer was hotdogging the 35th annual race. The 33-year-old Columbia man walked toward the starting area as a 6-foot-1 frankfurter, complete with a squiggly line of mustard. When asked why he decided on that Halloween costume, he said it was because "I couldn't find one with ketchup."

Farmer said he has run a handful of 5Ks, sometimes in costume, but has never run a marathon in Halloween attire. He finished in 4:47:22.

Road construction

Road improvements to Constitution Avenue that started last week caught race officials by surprise Wednesday and necessitated a one-mile long course adjustment up and down curbs and onto the gravel pedestrian portion of the Mall. . . .

Groundpounders and 2010 Marine Corps Marathon Hall of Fame inductees Mel Williams in 4:01:33, Will Brown in 5:26:07, Matt Jaffe in 6:19:55 and Al Richmond in 5:23:59, added a 35th year to their streak of having completed every marathon.

© 2010 The Washington Post Company