Kids, adults run in memory of teacher and her son

Perfect weather greeted participants at the Chana Educational Center on Sunday as they arrived to pay tribute to a former teacher and her son.

The 2021 Infinity Run, held as a fundraiser for the Maggie & Amos Foundation, included a 1-mile fun run, 5K, kids activities, a silent auction, and food.

Maggie and Amos perished after an October 2016 fire in their home.

The fire was later determined to be an arson and Maggie’s ex-husband and Amos’ father, Duane Meyer, 38, was charged in 2019 with four counts of first degree homicide, two counts of aggravated arson and one count of concealment of a homicidal death.

Maggie, 31, was a teacher for the Chana Education Center at the time of her death. She was found dead on a couch on the first floor of her burning home and Amos was pronounced dead a short time later at Rockford Memorial Hospital.

The case is still pending in Ogle County Circuit Court.

On Sunday, Grant Wendorf, 4, of Byron, took his time to carefully paint his “Kindness Rock” in memory of Maggie and Amos. Grant was there in part to cheer on his grandpa, Oregon Fire Chief Michael Knoup, in the 5K.

“It is cooler today,” said Knoup referring to recent 90-degree temps as he prepped for the race.

Meanwhile, 5-year-old twins Ava and Joanna Jennings of Stillman Valley, donned their helmets and rode their pink bikes alongside mom and dad, Tyler and Cassie, in the 5K.

“This is the second 5K they’ve done with us,” said Cassie, who is a teacher at the school.

Ava and Joanna did not have much to say after the race and just nodded quietly when asked if the slight wind caused enough of a drag on their handlebar tassels to affect their time.

Earleen Hinton

Earleen oversees production and content of 9 community weeklies and has worked for Shaw Newspapers since 1985.