Sabrina Patterson Memorial event set for June 8

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Marathon participants encouraged to get ready for upcoming fundraiser

Participants in last year’s Sabrina Patterson Memorial Fundraiser Marathon release balloons into the air in memory of the local woman who was murdered in October 2010.

SACKVILLE, N.B. – Family and friends of Sabrina Patterson will come together once again this year to hold a tribute event that not helps keep Sabrina’s memory alive but also turns the tragic circumstances of her death into a way of helping others.

Preparations are in full swing for the third annual Sabrina Patterson Memorial Fundraiser Marathon on June 8, an event that aims to raise funds and awareness for victims of domestic violence.

Last year, the walk/run fundraiser brought in just over $18,000 and organizers are aiming their sights even higher this year – $25,000.

“We’re hoping for an even bigger year,” says Denise Murphy, Sabrina’s sister.

Seventy-five per cent of the proceeds from the event will go to Crossroads for Women Inc in memory of Sabrina while 25 per cent will be put into a trust fund for her two young children.

Crossroads is an agency in southeast New Brunswick that provides services for women and children who are victims of family violence. Crossroads offers support, transition shelter, second-stage shelter, peer counseling, outreach and referrals to other professional services offered in the region.

Murphy says the idea behind donating to Crossroads is to let more people know about the programs and facilities that are available for victims of domestic violence – because no one should have to live their life in fear.

“We’re hoping to prevent this from happening to someone else,” she says. “We want people to know there is help out there. There are avenues out there, places to turn. You can get out. You don’t have to live with it.”

Sabrina, a 25-year-old mother of two, was brutally murdered in October 2010 by her former boyfriend Fred Prosser. Prosser was charged with her death this past December, sentenced to a life in prison for first-degree murder and sexual assault.

Murphy says now that Prosser’s finally been convicted, Sabrina’s loved ones have begun to heal and this annual memorial event can help with that process.

The main portion of the event, which is the marathon, will consist of a choice between 5, 11, 21 and 42 km distance so that anyone can feel free to participate. Deadline to register for the marathon is May 26.

Murphy says participants will receive a free purple t-shirt with their registration fee and are asked to collect pledges for the run.

“We had over 150 people in purple last year and would love to see at least 200 this year,” she says.

Other activities throughout the day at the Tantramar civic centre will include a barbecue, a silent auction, musical entertainment, a bake sale, raffle tickets, children’s activities and more.

Organizers are also planning several other events within the coming weeks to help reach their $25,000 goal. A pub night will be held this Saturday night at Teasers in Amherst, with admission by donation. On May 11, there is an ATV run planned in Sackville. And on June 1, a children’s activity day/barbecue will be held in Amherst at Dickey Park.

And as they have for the past two years, the organizers are again looking for support from the local businesses in terms of donations of items for the auction, barbecue, or cash sponsorships to help cover costs.

“We have had amazing support over the past two years and this year is shaping up to be the same,” says Murphy.

For more information on the upcoming events, check out the website at www.neverforgetyou.ca or contact Denise Murphy at (506) 233-9386.

Geographic location: SACKVILLE, New Brunswick, Amherst Tantramar Dickey Park

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