MEMPHIS, TN. — The Memphis running community is lacing up its shoes in Eliza Fletcher’s honor.
A group of women plans to finish Fletcher’s run around 4:20 Friday morning.
That’s the same time she was abducted on her route near the University of Memphis.
“I think it’s important for us to stand up, for the women in this community to stand up for ourselves,” Danielle Heineman of Memphis said.
As a mother and avid runner, the abduction and murder of Fletcher hit home for Danielle Heineman.
“We all just feel like we can’t run alone, and we should not feel that way,” she said.
Police say Fletcher was running her usual route down Central Ave. early Friday morning when a man in an SUV got out and forced her into the car.
Some people question if she should have been running alone while it was dark outside. It’s an argument that bothers Heineman.
“Why isn’t she running on a treadmill? Why isn’t she running after work? Women can’t do that,” she said. “We have jobs, we have families to take care of, and we have other commitments. Yet we have a right to be runners also.”
That’s why this Friday, one week after Fletcher’s abduction, Heineman and other women are waking up early to run the route Fletcher never got to finish.
They plan to run down Central Ave. and back to the area of Belvedere, which is where Fletcher lived.
“My thought was that a few of us would go out, and we would just kind of stand up for that right and say, you know what, I am running at 4 in the morning, and nobody is going to stop us from doing that,” Heineman said.
Heineman said she’s already heard from hundreds of women who want to join her to make a stand.
“We have a very strong running community here in Memphis, and this just shows it,” she said.
Heineman said she’s planning to make a Facebook event for the run so people interested can find out the details online.
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