Two Yorkton runners participated in the Maui Oceanfront Marathon 10K Course without knowing that the other was there.
Yorkton Pacers Running Club member and long-time Yorkton resident Bernie Wlock, as well as new Yorktonite Melissa Honour, met each other at the starting line on a chance encounter simply because Wlock was wearing a t-shirt with ‘Saskatchewan’ emblazoned on the front and a Saskatchewan flag sprawled on the back. “I was wearing the shirt that I usually wear when running marathons,” said Wlock. “I was standing at the starting line, waiting for the race to begin when I felt someone tap my shoulder.”
The culprit responsible for tapping Wlock’s shoulder was Honour, who, while stretching and trying to keep awake for the race (it was just after 6:00a.m.), spotted Wlock amongst the other competitors and decided to have a friendly chat. “Ten minutes before the race began I spotted this tall man with a Saskatchewan flag on his shirt,” mentioned Honour. “Of course I had to say hello, so I introduced myself, asked where he was from and found out that we were both from Yorkton! What a small world.”
A small world indeed. Not only are the two runners from Yorkton, but they also work at competing businesses with Wlock at Royal Ford and Honour at Canadian Tire, which led to them declaring a the race to be a “friendly competition” as Honour put it.
And while Wlock won the friendly competition, or, as Honour put it “Bernie left us in the dust”, both enjoyed the experience.
However Honour also believes that there was some unknown reason why she suddenly decided to run the marathon which led her to meet Wlock in the first place.
After all, unlike Wlock, who traveled to Maui for the marathon and a vacation, Honour never planned on running when she arrived in Maui. “We were on vacation. My friend and I were researching things to do in Maui and found that the marathon was on that same weekend,” said Honour, continuing, “I wasn’t really sold on the idea since I hadn’t run in six months due to a hectic work schedule. But eventually I decided to do it.
“Luckily for me I managed to meet Bernie, who I found out was a founding member of the Yorkton Pacers Running Club, a club which I was interested in joining but hadn’t yet done so. The chance meeting definitely helped make my mind up.”
The chance encounter also started a lifelong friendship between the two runners, who, despite their company allegiances, will continue to run with each other for as long as they are able.