Marian Central will pay tribute to former teacher and coach Kay Hansen with its inaugural 5K for Kay race at 8 a.m. on May 17 at the high school.
Hansen died a year ago at the age of 62 after fighting breast cancer. She taught religion, AP English, English and speech composition at Marian for 27 years. She also coached coached cross country.
Hansen originally was diagnosed with cancer in 1997 at the age of 47. After a year of chemotherapy and treatment, she remained in remission for most of the next 15 years. It was then, her husband Earl said, that she took up running.
“She was 48 when she started,” said Earl, a retired fireman-paramedic in Hoffman Estates. “It was just an amazing path. She did a lot of races and won her age group almost every time.”
Kay then became the Hurricanes cross country coach, so now the school will give something back in her honor. Entry fees for the race are $30 and the money will go to the Kay Hansen Memorial Scholarship Fund to help Marian students with college.
The race will start at the high school and wind through the neighborhood before ending at the soccer stadium. Anyone wishing to enter the race can do so online at 5KforKay.com or on the race’s Facebook page.