A FOUNDING member of the Edgell Jog Committee will be honoured with a trophy named after him in this year's event.
The Lou Shehade Memorial Shield will be awarded to the first Bathurst man and woman over the line, with the shield to be hung in the foyer of the Western Advocate.
Lou, as he was known by all, passed away in May 2020 following a decline in his health.
A great friend to the Bathurst community, he was known in the city as a talented squash player, the former general manager of the Western Advocate and original committee member of the Edgell Jog.
So great was his commitment to Bathurst, he was also honoured as one of the city's original Living Legends back in 2015 for his decades-long work in the community.
In announcing the memorial shield, which is sponsored by the Western Advocate, Edgell Jog Committee member Ray Stapley said Lou was instrumental in establishing the running event back in 1976.
"He was on the committee who worked with the Edgell people - who worked to get it started and then kept it rolling," he said.
"He was still actively involved at the time of his death in 2020. He was still our chair and still doing plenty of work."
Mr Stapley said the committee felt there should be a memorial for Lou.
"[Edgell Jog Committee member] Jim Hallahan went to the Woodies [Central Tablelands Woodcraft] and spoke with John Trollor there.
"They came up with this design and then they worked on it over the last couple of months."
Mr Stapley said the trophy was hand-made by the Woodies members using their machines and expertise.
"John has done all of that. The shield is based on our [the Edgell Jog's] logo," he explained.
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Mr Stapley said Lou's wife, Janese, knew they were creating a special trophy.
"Lisa [Lou's daughter] is still in Bathurst, but his son and family were coming up to run in last year's jog," Mr Stapley said.
"Of course, COVID-19 stopped it last year, but they've already entered again for this year's jog.
"Lou's son is bringing his kids and wife up just for the event."
Mr Stapley said the shield will be awarded to the first Bathurst woman and first Bathurst man over the line.
"There will be two names on the shield each year," he said.
"And we thought it had to be someone from Bathurst, of course, because Lou was Bathurst.
"We think it is a fantastic award and they [the Woodies] have done an outstanding job.
"It's something different, not just a cup or a mug.
"And it will be great to have it hanging in the Western Advocate."
Western Advocate editor Jacinta Carroll said the paper was proud to honour Lou's legacy in the community and said having the perpetual trophy hung in the foyer of the newspaper would be appropriate as it was a masthead that Lou loved deeply.
With the jog just weeks away, Mr Stapley encouraged people to get online and enter.
He said organisers have a COVID safety plan in place, and numbers are restricted for everyone's safety.
Fellow organising committee member Jim Hallahan has also urged entrants to get in early, saying his message to those who want to take part in the event is not to delay.
Entries are online for the first time this year.
And Mr Hallahan's message for those who have already entered? "I'd encourage people to get out and start training," he said.
Mr Hallahan said there will be "very good prizemoney" of $500 for winners in the schools categories this year, so organisers are hoping to see as many schools participating as possible, and he said the event's local business sponsors are all back this year, as well as a new sponsor, Capital Chemist.
The Edgell Jog will be held on Sunday, September 18.
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