Marine Corps Marathon in Iraq

mcm in iraq

On October 22nd the 42nd Marine Corps Marathon took place in Washington D.C. What few people know, however, is that there was also a Marine Corps Marathon in the Middle East that same day, known as the Marine Corps Marathon (Forward).

Major Megan Malia McClung was an avid runner, completing seven Ironman distance competitions, and ran the Marine Corps Marathon every chance she could. Although she was deployed to Iraq in 2006, she didn't let that stop her. She convinced the Marine Corps Marathon staff as well as Iraqi and Marine Corps commands in the area to let her re-create the marathon in Iraq. There were over 110 runners who came from Iraq and Afghanistan to run the marathon. Major McClung also participated in the race and finished second among the female racers, despite running with an injury.

Major McClung was a Public Affairs Officer and was responsible for public relations hearings and escorting the media throughout combat zones. Major McClung was killed when her vehicle struck an improvised explosive device while escorting a FOX News crew to the Governance Center, and a Newsweek reporter to a coalition outpost in Ramadi.

The Marine Corps Marathon (Forward) is still conducted each year, and is run in several locations now to allow more runners to participate. Runners who participated in the Marine Corps Marathon (Forward) received the same medal as those who competed in the 42nd Marine Corps Marathon in the United States.

Major McClung

Marine Corps photo. Lynn Kinney (left), Megan McClung (center) and Amy Forsythe(right) served together during their deployment to Camp Fallujah, Iraq in 2006. Camp Pendleton, CA. Dec 22, 2015.

If you would like to participate in the Marine Corps Marathon in D.C. on behalf of Team Marine Parents, click here to learn more.

Written by David Ogden, Sgt. USMC '11-'16.

David Ogden, USMC

David was a Sergeant with the United States Marine Corps from 2011-2016. He is a combat veteran. He has worked at Marine Parents as a writer since he left the Marine Corps. He is currently in college and writes for the organization full-time. Click here to read more about the author.


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