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Southlake Style

Gallery: Inaugural Run With the Soldiers 5k

Nov 20, 2014 03:43PM ● By Kevin

US Servicemembers from Plano based Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Recruiting Station. Photo courtesy of Deann Badura.

In honor of Veteran’s Day, over 500 Runners attended the Del Frisco's Run With the Soldiers 5k on Saturday, November 8 at Bicentennial Park in Southlake, TX. Retired military, as well as current military who are employees of Del Frisco's Restaurant Group were in attendance to share their story of how they have served their country. Mark Mednansky, CEO of Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group, received a proclamation from the City of Southlake, Deputy Mayor Pro Tem, Brandon Bledsoe on behalf of Mayor John Terrell of Southlake and Southlake City Council, recognizing November 8, 2014, as Del Frisco's Run with the Soldiers 5k Day for Operation Once in a Lifetime. Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Bledsoe also thanked each person who was running to support our military or choosing to run cadence with one of the four military branches.

Run With The Soldiers 5k benefits Operation Once in a Lifetime, a nonprofit organization created to make the dream of US soldiers come true. It grants requests, wishes and needs for all soldiers and various causes; wounded, unwounded, deployed, non-deployed, all ranks and all branches of the United States Armed Forces, you serve, you qualify. 

We were fortunate to meet many DFW veterans who now work for Del Frisco's and were honored to host the first Del Frisco's Run with the Soldiers 5k in Southlake on November 8. One such Army veteran in Fort Worth who we have met who works at Del Frisco's is Retired Captain Charlie Michael of the Fort Worth Steak House and Sgt. Matthew Epstein, server at Del Frisco’s Grille Dallas. 

What Michael loved about the military was the feeling of family, camaraderie and the very close relationships he developed. What was difficult for him and others in the service is that they feel they don’t really get a chance to make their own personal mark or legacy. They have no proof to show for the tours and jobs they do in the military. For that reason, many ex-soldiers and reservists choose their next job to include something where they can create so that they have some record of leaving something behind. For him, his choice, as many other soldiers choose, was to cook and create in the kitchen. 

Michael said that in his opinion there needs to be a better system of taking care of soldiers after then get home. Our VA is not equipped to handle all the needs. These soldiers need medical and psychological care. He started working at Del Frisco’s one year ago after walking by and walking in on his day off. He loves that medical insurance is part of the employment benefits package. He is a culinary school graduate.

To learn more about the Del Frisco’s Run With The Soldiers 5k please visit

Story and photos provided by Deann Badura

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