“Life and Death Path” run organised by Baltic Defence College’s students

On the 12th of January, students of the Joint Command and General Staff and Higher Command Studies Courses, along with members of the Baltic Defence College faculty, paid tribute the victims of January 13th, 1991, by taking part in memorial event and symbolic run on the "Life and Death Path".

The memorial event took place on a windy afternoon in the vicinity of Tartu Anne Canal and was attended by more than forty Baltic Defence College students and faculty members representing Lithuania, Estonia, Germany, Latvia, Moldova, Norway, Ukraine and the United States.

The event started with an address by Colonel Albertas Dapkus, Director of the Higher Command Studies Course, who reminded attendees of the sequence of significant events that occurred in January, 1991, and called all participants to pay tribute to the victims of those event with a one-minute moment of silence.

The event continued with a speech delivered by Major General Andis Dilans, Commandant of the Baltic Defence College, who stressed that the cohesion and sacrifice of Lithuanians, Latvians, and Estonians along with people of other nations in defence of freedom and values of democracy significantly contributed to the fall of oppressive Soviet regime.

the official part of the event over, officers and civilians hit the track and paid tribute to the victims of January 13th by running five laps (approximately 9 kilometres) around Tartu’s Anne Canal. After completing the run, participants were invited to enjoy a cup of hot tea and cookies on the side of the canal.

The Amateur Runners Association of Lithuania organized the first of these memorial runs on the "Life and Death Path" on January 13th, 1992, with the aim of paying tribute to the victims of the Soviet Army's bloody attack. Participants ran approximately 9 kilometres from the Antakalnis Cemetery in Vilnius, where graves of the victims of Soviet aggression are located, to the Vilnius Television Tower, where the tragic events took place in 1991. Since then, this event has been organized every year and is attended by thousands of people.

The tradition to run on the "Life and Death Path" in Tartu was initiated by Lieutenant Colonel Gintaras Koryzna, a Baltic Defence College Instructor, in 2015 and this was the third year the event was held in Tartu.


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