On April 16, 2012 I will be running to honor my husband, 1st LT. JAMES R. ZIMMERMAN, by participating in the 2012 Boston Marathon. In honor of my husband, I will be running to support the Run for the Fallen Maine.
James was born May 18, 1985, in Presque Isle, Maine. He was a graduate of Greater Houlton Christian Academy, Class of 2003, and enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps March 21, 2003, the first day of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He attended boot camp at Paris Island, S.C and served in the Marine Corps Reserve, 1st Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment, Topsham, for one year. Shortly thereafter he was awarded a Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps Scholarship in 2004. He attended the University of Maine, Orono, where he graduated in 2008. Shortly after being commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant, James attended The Basic School and the Infantry Officer Course in Quantico, Va., after which he was assigned as platoon commander for the 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment of Camp Lejeune, N.C. In May 2010, he was promoted to first lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps. James deployed June 13, 2010, to Marjah Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. On November 2nd 2010, James made the ultimate sacrifice when he was killed in action, while engaging the enemy in small arms fire.
James was a good man. From a young age he embodied a strong sense of patriotism and love for his God and country. He did not become a Marine for the glory but because he felt like it was his duty as a citizen of the United States of America to protect and serve his country so that we can enjoy the precious freedoms that we so often take for granted.
When I first met James I knew that there was something special about him. James always had a way of bringing life to a room with his bigger than life personality and infectious smile. When we were in college, everybody knew James. He just had a way about him that made it easy to love him. He lived his life with a sense of vigor that most people never learn to do. He was spontaneous, full of life, honorable, a great leader, a friend that would do anything for you, a Marine that would fight to his death for you and a husband that made me want to be a better person. When James took the Oath to become a Marine, he understood the potential sacrifice but he firmly believed in what the Marine Corps stood for. He never wanted to leave this world or leave myself or our family behind, but he was not afraid to do so.
It has been over a year since James has been gone, though it seems like just yesterday. Myself and our family will never be the same without him. As his wife I feel as though it is my mission, as his living representation, to continue to honor James in a way that this world will NEVER forget his sacrifice or the sacrifices of our fallen heroes.
Please take the time to make a donation through this website in support of the Run for the Fallen Maine. The mission of Run for the Fallen Maine, a 100% volunteer organization, is to keep alive the names and memories of our Fallen Heroes from Maine and those that had strong family ties to Maine. All proceeds from this fundraiser will go towards Run for the Fallen Maine's scholarship foundation, funds to help the families who have lost service members from Maine, and also to help put together the August run event. This year's 5th annual Run for the Fallen Maine will be held August 19th, a run from Ogunquit to Portland to honor these men and their families.
Many thanks for your support -- and don't forget to forward this to anyone who you think might want to donate too!