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Two County women carry torch for Pan Am Games


Julia Swedak and Jennifer Ronan enroute with their torches.

Two residents represented Prince Edward County carrying the Pan Am Games Torch for part of its journey in Belleville Friday night.

Donna and Jen at relay point.

Donna and Jen at relay point.

Jen Ronan, a nurse with Hastings Prince Edward Public Health, and Julia Swedak, from the SE LHIN, were two of 3,000 torchbearers on the 41-day journey. It  ends in Toronto, host for the games July 10-26 and the Parapan Am Games August 7-15.

We were able to catch up with Ronan, who said the relay went by fast and she felt like she could run forever, but was glad she didn’t have to test herself.

“The torch was heavier and hotter than I imagined,” she said. “It was also fun being chased by eight cops and have a paparazzi capturing the whole event. I certainly felt like a celebrity.”

Ronan said she has been looking forward to the relay for months, and was honoured to be among 22 runners from the region carrying a 1.2kg aluminum torch.

“From the moment I arrived at Zwick’s Park, the volunteers start pumping you up. Their energy is infectious and before we ran the runners had the opportunity to enjoy some laughs and get to know each other.

“It was an awesome fun time. I am glad I got to be part of it.”

Friday, Day 34, started at CFB Kingston and travelled through Odessa, Napanee and to Tyendinaga, enroute to Belleville.

Kenzo-community-flameKenzo Dozono, a local martial arts master, carried the torch into Zwick’s Park and lit the community cauldron before a pumped up audience.

“Thank you everybody to come here,” he said, after passing the torch to officials. “Go! Canada GO!”

Quinte West and 8 Wing/CFB Trenton are inviting area residents to a Pan American Games Torch Relay celebration at the National Air Force Museum of Canada Saturday, July 4th from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m

Canada’s top athletes are among the 41 Pan American Sports Organization member nations are competing on the journey to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

The hot Pa Am tickets so far are for football (soccer); beach volleyball, rugby sevens and baseball. Closing ceremonies are July 26.


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