Lees-McRae’s Jason Sabbides to participate in Mountain Man Memorial March in Gatlinburg, Tenn.

March 31, 2015

By Samantha Wohlers ’15

Assistant Professor of Communication Arts and Design Jason Sabbides will participate in the Mountain Man Memorial March (MMMM) on April 10-11 in Gatlinburg, Tenn. The 8th annual march will honor Gold Star families and loved ones.

The Mountain Man Memorial March consists of two main categories – the run and the march. The run portion of the competition, categorized by gender and age, consists of three events including a full marathon, a half marathon and a 10 km run. The march portion of the competition is categorized into military and civilian groups and is further segmented into heavy and light categories in which entries have uniform requirements and a ruck sack weight. The march includes two distances, 26.2 miles and 13.1 miles.     

Veteran Jason Sabbides expresses, “The motto, ‘all gave some, some gave all,’ inspires me to endure physical pain and mental fortitude to honor those that gave all. As we pay tribute to these individuals that gave all, we also draw attention to East Tennessee Veterans and my non-profit, The Warriors Canvas & Veterans Art Center.” The non-profit’s mission is to help decrease the number of veteran suicides per day (currently 22) by using art for therapy and healing.

Sabbides spent six years in combat arms Military Occupational Specialty. He was Airborne Air Assault Infantry and has a strong camaraderie and affinity with military service. Today, he teaches Communication Arts and Design courses including painting, drawing and web design at Lees-McRae College.

According to the Mountain Man Memorial March website, the MMMM was born as a means to honor First Lieutenant Frank B. Walkup IV, a University of Tennessee graduate as well as an alumnus of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, who was killed in action in Iraq in 2007. In April 2008, the MMMM consisted of cadets carrying a 35-pound ruck sack all while marching a 26.2-mile distance. At the end of the march, a University of Tennessee ranger team presented a Gold Star flag to Walkup’s mother. More than 575 participants from across the country have completed the MMMM.

For more information about the Mountain Man Memorial March or communications arts and design at Lees-McRae College, please contact Jason Sabbides at sabbidesj@lmc.edu

Update (4.13.15): Jason Sabbides completed the march in 9 hours with a 38 pound ruck sack.

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Nina Mastandrea  |  Content Manager
Tel: 828.898.8729  |  Email: mastandrean@lmc.edu