Friday, January 27, 2012

Safety in Numbers, for those of you who run

A couple weeks ago, my sister-in-law went out for a run and she wrote about what happened to her:

Today at 10am I went for a long distance run by my house. During the run a white van with three men pulling a trailer slowed down to wave at me and then sped off. About five minutes later I saw them again where the running trail intersected the road. This time they pulled in front of me, rolled down their window and said 'hi' and I felt very uncomfortable. Had I not seen the men, I would have turned around and headed home like a normal run, but I didn't feel comfortable doing that because no one was around in the opposite direction, so I kept going forward (further away from my home) where the van couldn't follow me and where there was another runner ahead. The van pulled into a tennis parking lot and stopped. At this point I was very frightened, I didn't have a phone and knew I needed to get home. I took a different route along some well traveled roads. There was only one road that connected the previous neighborhood to the new neighborhood I was in (and it is confusing to navigate). Anyways, I told myself that if I saw the van again I would run for help at a house. Twenty minutes later I passed the road that connects the neighborhoods and started to feel at ease....that's when I saw the van pulling up a road parallel to the previous. They saw me and I starting sprinting to a house. I saw a man outside throwing something away and I starting screaming 'HELP ME!! THIS VAN IS FOLLOWING ME!! PLEASE HELP ME!!' The van FLOORED it to where I was, slowed down in front of me, and when they heard what I was saying, sped off. The man very curtly said he'd call the police. I asked if I could come in his home and he said no, went into his home and bolted the door in my face. At this point I was crying I didn't know where to go and was afraid the men would drive back. I ran into the backyard, and jumped three fences. I looked for a house with a car and some semblance of children. I found one and pounded on their door. The couple was kind and let me in. I was in hysterics and bawling. They kindly drove me the mile and half left to my house where I then called the police and filed a report. Sadly I didn't get the license plat number but I tried to describe everything else.

I said many pleading prayers throughout this incident to be protected and I can attest that I was. For those of you women who go running by yourself, I plead that you get a running partner. These scary incidents can happen at ANY time of the day. I'm so grateful I made it home okay and for the kind family that helped me.

I just wanted to post this for all you runners out there to be cautious and be aware. This happened to her in the middle of the day, so it wasn't dark out. It's a good thing she was alert and aware of her surroundings. I'm just grateful something terrible did not happen.

1 comment:

swedemom said...

Very, very scary. Thank you for sharing.

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