Oakwood University president, Delbert Baker, Ph.D., returned from a successful Antarctic Ice Marathon run after a couple of weeks of being snowed in at the South Pole. He was met with balloons and cheers from a group of approximately 30 well-wishers on Sunday morning, December 28, at the Huntsville International Airport.
Since completing the marathon earlier this month, Baker and some of the other marathon runners had been snowed in at the South Pole with no flight plans in sight, due to unfavorable weather (i.e., blizzard) conditions. The group camped out in tents on the ice in sub-zero temperatures, and indeed, had a “White Christmas.” They drew names and exchanged words of appreciation in place of gifts, and shared various readings about the meaning of Christmas.
Word arrived by text message on December 26 that Baker had gotten clearance for a flight out of Antarctica and was headed to Chile where he'd catch another flight to the United States. One can only imagine how happy he must have been to leave the Antarctic Circle after a much longer than expected stay.
Though weary of the inclement weather, President Baker has been positive throughout the entire experience, and is thankful to have returned home, ticking off yet another continent on his marathon list. Baker's marathon runs are part of the Running for Scholarships campaign, which has two parts -- 50 States for Students and 7 Continents for Students. Each race is underwritten by the Florida Hospital's CREATION Health Model, allowing every penny pledged to go to Oakwood University student scholarships and endowment.