Mildred “Mickey” Stolzoff was known in Oceanside as a woman who enjoyed physical activity and loved being part of her community.
Mickey died Oct. 8 at age 97. The longtime Oceanside resident raced in six Turkey Trots and the Tri-City Medical Senior Mile in its inaugural year last year, as the oldest runner at age 96. She was an inspiration to other runners.
Mickey was also an inspiration to her family, and several of Mickie’s family members and friends will run in her memory as part of Team Mickie at the 12th annual Pacific Marine Credit Union O’Side Turkey Trot, presented by Tri-City Medical Center. Team Mickie already boasts 28 members, including Mickie’s two daughters, her granddaughters and many cousins and friends.
“She was always an active lady and she encouraged us to be the same,” said Dolores Gascon, Mickey’s granddaughter. “She graduated from Oceanside High School 81 years ago and always had a love for the city. She loved running every year. We thought that forming a team was the best way possible to honor my grandmother.”
Gascon said Mickey enjoyed talking about wellness and staying fit.
“She enjoyed the Turkey Trot for a number of reasons, including the fact she loved Oceanside,” Gascon said. “She was also someone who enjoyed giving back to the community, and she thought the Turkey Trot was one way to do that. The rest of our family feels the same. We’ve lived here for multiple generations. This is our community.”
Kathy Kinane, founder of the race and director of the Move Your Feet Before You Eat® Foundation, said Mickey stood out among the runners.
“I was so impressed at her enthusiasm in participating with her extended family that I was overwhelmed,” Kinane said. “At 96 years old, she was proudly standing with her great-grandchildren so I could take a photo.”
More than 9,000 runners and walkers from 46 states are expected to participate in the 12th Annual Pacific Marine Credit Union O’side Turkey Trot and kids run set for Thanksgiving Day, November 23. The event is presented by Tri-City Medical Center and will also feature a Senior 1 Mile on Wed. Nov. 22, for runners 65 and older.
The 10k run and 5K run/walk will kick off at 6:55 a.m. and 8:05 a.m. respectively, starting on historic Highway 101 at the Civic Center (located at 330 N. Coast Highway) and finishing on The Strand just south of the iconic Oceanside Pier. A 5K walk begins at 8:45 a.m. All races feature live entertainment along the courses.
The family-oriented event also includes one- to ¼-mile kids runs starting at 10:30 a.m., and a 3-day expo. New this year, the O’side Trot will have a $1,000 Costume Contest prize purse.
Runners and walkers can also form family or company teams. More than 50 teams participated in the 2016 event.
New this year, the top 10 teams with the most members receive $100 gift certificates from 333 Pacific, a steak and seafood restaurant in Oceanside. Older runners are invited to participate in the Tri-City Medical Center Senior Mile the day before Thanksgiving.
Entrants can designate part of their entry fees to support local schools and non-profits. The PMCU O’side Turkey Trot has raised more than $270,000 for its participating charities.
For more information, to register or to volunteer, please visit www.osideturkeytrot.com or call (760) 434-5255.
*First reported by Osidenews.com.