New Castle’s Hejtmanek wins Silt’s 10th Annual Run for Their Lives 5K |

New Castle’s Hejtmanek wins Silt’s 10th Annual Run for Their Lives 5K

Mike Vidakovich

In 1984, Nanci Limbach founded the Pauline S. Schneegas Wildlife Foundation in Silt.

The center, which was named after Limbach’s grandmother, specializes in professional care and rehabilitation of injured and orphaned wildlife, as well as providing educational programs on wildlife and environmental issues.

From black bears to golden eagles, the foundation accepts all species of wildlife brought in by public agencies and citizens.

Saturday’s 10th annual Run for Their Lives 5K, which started and finished near the Stoney Ridge Ball Field in Silt, serves as a fundraiser for the Schneegas Foundation and its furry residents.

This year’s race, run under a canopy of clear blue sky, attracted a record field of 139 animal-loving runners and walkers.

New Castle’s Josh Hejtmanek, who has made a habit of dominating the local race circuit in recent years, found the winner’s circle again on Saturday morning as he used his quick-clicking metronome pace to record a winning time of 18 minutes, 24 seconds on the hilly 3.1 mile course run through Silt’s mountain neighborhoods.

Rifle resident Zach Robinson was the second place overall finisher with a time of 19:20.

The ladies side of the Schneegas 5K featured two of the best the area has to offer, as local running legend Heidi Vosbeck of Glenwood and senior-to-be at Glenwood High School Erica Diemoz battled for race bragging rights from start to finish.

It was Diemoz who had a bit more gas left in her tank, managing to pull away in the race’s final mile to record the victory in 22:19, which was also good for seventh place overall.

“She [Vosbeck] is so awesome. I was just trying my best to stay ahead of her,” said Diemoz, who will lead Glenwood High’s cross country team this fall. “I tried to stay steady on the uphill part of the race and then open things up on the downhill.”

Vosbeck, who is fresh off running April’s Boston Marathon, was equally impressed with her much younger counterpart.

“I tried to keep her [Diemoz] from getting too far away from me, but she’s very tough. But this is a good race on a beautiful day, and for a great cause. I’m not disappointed at all,” said Vosbeck, who placed ninth overall at 22:55.

Under the decade-long direction of Sandy Burns, the Run for Their Lives 5K is the fourth race in the popular Colorado River Valley Charity Race Series.

Next up in the six-race event is the Hogback Hustle 5K in New Castle on Saturday, July 8.

For complete results from Saturday’s race, visit

Top Fifteen Overall (*Denotes Female): 1. Josh Hejtmanek, 18 minutes, 24 seconds; 2. Zach Robinson, 19:20; 3. Josh Nye, 21:19; 4. James Edwards, 21:26; 5. Tim Lavin, 22:01; 6. CJ Alberts, 22:18; 7. Erica Diemoz*, 22:19; 8. Steven Fuller, 22:44; 9. Heidi Vosbeck*, 22:55; 10. Candelario DeLuera, 22:56; 11. Brad Palmer, 23:02; 12. Doug Furlong, 23:15; 13. Johnny Utah, 24:18; 14. Brock Hedberg, 25:00; 15. Amanda Furlong*, 25:47.

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