On 11th January 2018, the Lithuanian contingent at the Baltic Defence College (BALTDEFCOL) organised a commemorative run for those killed in the defence of Lithuanian Freedom, and specifically defence of the Vilnius Television Tower (13th January 1991). The memorial event took place in the vicinity of Tartu Anne Canal and was attended by more than forty Baltic Defence College students and faculty members.
The event started with an address by Colonel Dalius Polekauskas, Senior National Representative for Lithuania. After the speech, the participants run two laps around Anne Canal to pay tribute to the victims. For participating, the BALTDEFCOL runners received commemorative medals.
The local event is an extension of the official commemorative run scheduled to take place in Vilnius on the 14th of January 2018. For 27 years, the Lithuanian Runners Association, Lithuanian Armed Forces and Lithuanian Ministry of Defence have annually organized the event. In Vilnius, the participants run a symbolic distance of 9 km, which starts at the memorial burial grounds and ends at the Vilnius TV Tower. Similar commemorative runs will take place in Brussels, London and Washington.
Last year, over 6000 runners participated in Vilnius, including guests from 12 countries (Belarus, Belgium, Czech Republic, Spain, Italy, Japan, United States of America, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Sweden and Ukraine). More than 3000 members of the Lithuanian Armed Forces were among the runners. They ran in one column alongside allied troops serving in enhanced forward presence (eFP) units.