STRATFORD, Conn. — As runners stepped off Saturday in a 5K race in Stratford to honor Vicki Soto, many were decked out in pink tutus, pink wigs and pink flamingos.
The pink accessories were favorites of Soto, a victim of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, , lending a festive air to what could have been a somber event.
Her hometown of Stratford honors Soto with an annual 5K near her birthday. She would have turned 30 on Nov. 14.
Nearly 3,000 runners took part in the race, which was organized by her cousin, Stratford resident and Fairfield police officer James Wiltsie, with longtime race director Marty Schaivone.
The race raised an estimated $100,000 for the Vicki Soto Memorial Fund.
All proceeds will go toward scholarships for students pursuing careers in education.
About 10 teachers from Stratford’s Victoria Soto School, which opened this fall, took part in the race. Donning neon pink wigs — in memory of Soto’s love for pink flamingos — they joined hundreds of others who wore flamingo headbands and pink and purple tutus.
“We need to support this because it’s an honor to teach at that school,” said second-grade teacher Kim Perillo of Stratford.
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