Seven Years Later, Hayden Still Running

Photo by Alan Olson Team Hayden prepares for the Ogden Newspapers 5K Run/Walk for Health on Saturday, a tradition the family has participated in for the past seven years. Shown from left are parents Melissa and Shane Walton, Brooke Walton, Hayden Walton and grandfather Don Orlando.

In 2012, Hayden Walton was the youngest entrant in the Ogden Newspapers 5K Run/Walk for Health, completing it at age 6.

Now, at age 13, he and his family return to Wheeling from their Virginia home each year as “Team Hayden” to keep the tradition going.

Hayden’s dad, Shane Walton, said he no longer runs outside the 5K, but grandfather Don Orlando still lives in Wheeling and said he’s been into running for health reasons for years.

Hayden, who is not chatty about his own track record, said he enjoys returning to the community event each year.

“I have fun,” he said. “It’s fun just to come out and do some running.”

Orlando penned a statement that he carried with him during the race, saying that the 5K is “a great way to get together and stay healthy.” He also was proud to say that Team Hayden consists of three generations — himself, Hayden’s parents Shane and Melissa, and Hayden himself.

“I now only see Hayden at the start of the race and after the race,” Orlando said. “Being from the local area, this race presents itself as a perfect venue for (the family to) visit back home.”

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