Sunday, July 27, 2014

Kromko’s spirit lives on through annual race

July 09. 2014 3:17PM
By Robert Tomkavage

If you would like to donate a basket or make a monetary donation to the Kristyn’s Celebration of Life Scholarship , contact Kate Grow at 570-575-6222.

To register for the Kristyn E. Kromko Memorial Scholarship Race, go to To sponsor the event or for more information, call Ruth Mancuso at 315-877-5575 or Grow at 570-575-6222.

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The 4th annual Kristyn Kromko Celebration of Life Memorial Race will be held July 12 at 9 a.m. at Baptist Bible College and Seminary in Clarks Summit.

The race allows family and friends to celebrate her life and provide Abington Heights’ seniors a little financial support.

Kromko was “absolute sunshine, whenever she walked into a room, it just lit up,” Ruth Mancuso said.

Kromko died in an automobile accident on Route 307, on April 26, 2010, when she was 16, three weeks after she earned her driver’s license.

She lived in Clarks Summit with her brother, Brandon, 23, and their parents, Joseph and Roberta (Bobbie) Kromko. She was a sophomore at Abington Heights High School at the time of the accident.

After the accident, Kromko’s family started a scholarship at Abington Heights in her honor. The first recipient was Elena DeSoto. Inclusive of this year’s recipients, Kristyn’s Celebration of Life Scholarship has afforded seniors a total of $8,000 in scholarship funds.

The funds have been raised through a car wash, a band benefit, contributions from family and friends and her annual two-mile race. The family hopes to continue the scope of the race each year and donate its proceeds to multiple seniors.

Participants in the race can either walk or run the course. Pre-registration forms are available at NEPARUNNER or participants can sign up at the event from 7 to 8:30 a.m.

Nina Sampogne, Miss Pennsylvania USA Ambassador Preteen, and her family have participated in all four of the races. She will sign autographs before and after the race.

Raffle baskets were incorporated into the race last year.

Kate Grow has been going door-to-door throughout the Abington community asking for donations and contributions.

According to Mancuso, Grow is receiving an “overwhelming” response of baskets, gift cards and donations.

The event will also feature homemade muffins and snacks displayed on a six-foot cupcake tier made by Ed and Gianna Baldoni.

Entry fee for the race is $15 and the first 100 participants registered are guaranteed a free T-shirt and thank you gift. The T-shirts were designed by Kromko’s friends, Grow and Abigail Sebastian. There are also trophies and medals awarded to males and females of different age groups and categories.

Along with designing the T-shirts, Grow and Sebastian also created a social media page on Facebook along with race flyers and posters. Suzen Snyder, proprietor for On Track Design, designed a website,

“Everyone is still so supportive over these past four years,” Mancuso said. “The school administrators, family, her friends have been wonderful and the community as a whole still reaches out to her family. For this we are forever grateful.”

Mike Show at Baptist Bible College has been working with Rob Ahrens, Abington Heights’ track/cross country coach and manager of The National Running Center and Randy White, Tunkhannock track/cross country coach to make the race a success.

“We hope everyone will come out and celebrate the life of Kristyn,” Mancuso said.

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