DECATUR– Heavy rainfall and thunderstorms throughout Saturday didn’t hamper the Rodney T. Miller Triathlon on Sunday as over 200 athletes participated in the 9th annual event on the shores of Lake Decatur.
The event is made up of a .75 mile swim, 19 mile bike ride, and 4.5 mile run.
Race director Gene Mueller said Sunday morning was one of the better turnouts he can remember since he started directing the race 5 years ago, “When the Decatur community senses something good, they tend to support it and we have had great support this year, just like in years past.”
Rodney Miller was a Sergeant with the Illinois State Police until his death in 2006. His wife, Karla Miller, said her husband was an avid outdoorsman who began competing in triathlons not too long before he was killed in a traffic accident in 2006. Miller was a swimmer at Millikin University where he won numerous awards, including All-American honors and six national championships.
The annual triathlon was created by his wife in an effort to not only memorialize her husband, but support local youth sports programs, “Rodney was not only a great father and husband but he was a great athlete and this race is what I knew that I needed to do to honor him.”
The top 3 overall finishers for the men’s division were Thomas Gerlach, who finished in just over an hour and twenty-three minutes, Tony White, and Christian Waterstraat. In the women’s division, Jackie Hering won with a time of one hour and twenty-eight minutes, followed by Sarah Alexander, and Jennifer Garrison. A complete list of winners will be posted here.