The first annual Vanessa Marcotte 5K Run and Walk kicked off at Wachusett Mountain Saturday morning on what would have been the young woman's 28th birthday.
A moment of silence began the race and music, food and an auction followed. The event benefits the Vanessa Marcotte Foundation, which delivers educational programs to promote female empowerment.
Marcotte was murdered in August of last year after leaving her mother's Princeton home to go for a run. Police arrested a suspect in April who prosecutors say posed as a stranded motorist before sexually assaulting her and burning her body.
More than 700 people came out for the event in Marcotte's name.
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