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Turkey Trot 5K dedicated to memory of Patrick O’Dell

Nov. 21, 2012 @ 06:08 PM

HUNTINGTON — The Sixth Annual 5K Turkey Trot Thursday is being dedicated in the memory of Patrick O’Dell, who died in a motorcycle accident in Santa Monica, Calif., this week.

O’Dell, 25, was a 2005 graduate of Huntington High School and 2009 graduate of Elon University who had been living in California pursuing a career in acting and modeling. He was an animal lover, and friends and family felt dedicating the Thanksgiving Day 5K to O’Dell would be a fitting tribute, said race organizer Patty Jennings.

Patrick was the son of Don and Martha O’Dell, who said that he will not only be missed here, but also by many friends in California. He had been working at a restaurant in Malibu.

“His coworkers there have been very supportive and had a memorial service,” said Don O’Dell, a Huntington attorney.

There’s been a tremendous outpouring of support on Facebook as well, he said, adding that one of Patrick’s friends summed him up well in the following Facebook post:

“I’ve been told a good measure of a person is how they act when no one is watching,” friend and coworker Layla Steinwald posted on Facebook. “He would get water for a dog tied to a post. He would say hi to the entire staff. He would pick up trash on the floor when other people walked right by it. He would break into song and dance because he didn’t care what other people thought of him. He would help your table without looking for a ‘thank you.’ He would always take a moment to look at the ocean and feed the seagulls when no one was looking.”

The event in his honor includes a 5K Fun Run and Walk, which begins in Ritter Park and winds its way through the park to the Memorial Arch at 7th Street West. Registration will begin at 8 a.m. Thursday at the Ritter Park Picnic Shelter, and day-of registration will be $30.

Jennings said that by mid-day Wednesday more 950 participants had registered for the race.

The accident occurred in the Pacific Palisades area on Tuesday morning, according to news reports. O’Dell’s motorcycle collided with a Santa Monica city bus. The accident is being investigated by the Los Angeles Police Department.