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‘Sully Shuffle’ 5K honors former Oak Lawn coach

Updated: November 10, 2011 11:07AM



Skip Sullivan touched many lives during his tenure as a coach and mentor at Oak Lawn Community High School.

“He’s a legend in the village of Oak Lawn,” said Trustee Alex Olejniczak, a graduate of the school.

Hundreds of Sullivan’s family, friends, former students and colleagues are expected to turn out Sunday for the third annual Sully Shuffle, a 5K run to raise money for the American Parkinson Disease Association.

Sullivan, a former football, baseball and golf coach at the high school, was diagnosed with the disease seven years ago.

More than 500 runners participated in last year’s event and raised $25,000 for the foundation. The inaugural run raised $20,000.

Sullivan said the support is overwhelming.

“It’s hard to describe the feeling you get when people go to bat for you,” said Sullivan, a 1969 Oak Lawn High School graduate and three-sport varsity athlete. “It’s good medicine. It’s something like a fairy tale. It’s not supposed to be this good.”

Janet Haubenreiser, head girls basketball coach at the school and a Sully Shuffle organizer, said she’s not surprised the 5k was an immediate success.

“We are lucky that Skip has such a good following, but we are not surprised,” Haubenreiser said. “Everything comes full circle. All his life, Skip has been a good, caring person as a family member, friend, teacher, coach and community member. He was there for people when they needed him and now these same people are there for him.”

The 5k run is certified this year and will follow a path through the residential streets north of the high school.

Check-in begins at 7:30 a.m. at school’s southwest tennis courts. The mini-shuffle, for children ages 2 to 10, begins at 8:30 a.m. The 5k starts at 9 a.m. The post-party begins at 1 p.m. at the Homestead Barr, 9306 S. Central Ave.

The fee is $35 for the run or $55 for the run and after-party. Walkers pay $30 or $50 if they also attend the party. The fee for the mini-shuffle is $15.

For more information or to register for the run, contact Kathy Mertz at (708) 741-5624 or visit www.sullyshuffle.org.

Monetary donations can be sent to Sully Shuffle, P.O. Box 842, Worth, IL 60482.



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