Thank you to all our participants, volunteers, and sponsors who helped make the fourth-annual Ben's Memorial Mile a successful one!

Ben's Memorial Mile is a family festival and running gala held every June to raise money and awareness for mental health and suicide prevention in honor of Ben Silver. We have races on the track for all ages and all abilities and other fun activities for the entire community. Scroll down to learn more and read about the charities we donate to.
The Village of Downers Grove declared June 15, 2019 Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Day:
Ben's Memorial Mile Logo
Information about this year's event:

Saturday, June 15, 2019

The Track at Downers Grove North High School
4436 Main Street, Downers Grove, IL 60515

-$25 for unlimited events
-Little Kids 100-Meter Dash only $5

There will be race-day registration for $30 (adults + older kids) and $5 (little kids’ 100m dash).


5:00 – National Anthem: The North High Alumni Chamber Choir

5:05 – Speeches from Silver family, NAMI, and Hope For The Day

5:15 – Open Mile (Heat 1)

5:30 – Open Mile (Heat 2)

5:45 – Open Mile (Heat 3)

6:00 – Open Mile (Heat 4)

6:15 – “Ben-ipede” 800-Meter Group Run

6:30 – Kids’ Half Mile

6:45 – Little Kids’ 100-Meter Dash

7:00 – Costume Mile

7:15 – “Geezer Wheezer” 400-Meter Run

7:30 – Dance Lesson led by Brittney Valdez

7:45 – Walking Mile

8:15 – Elite Mile (Heat 1)

8:25 – Elite Mile (Heat 2)

8:35 – Elite Mile (Heat 3)

8:45 – 4×400-Meter Relay

9:00 – Ben’s Victory Lap


-NEW: Fun games on the infield
-Bags tournament
-Scavenger Hunt
-Kids Tent
-Bake Sale
-Self-care tent


Take a look at this video from a previous Ben’s Memorial Mile!

Thank You for Being a Part of Ben’s Story

Recent Updates

Use Amazon to Donate

Looking for other ways you can donate? You can purchase Amazon goods through Amazon’s charitable website and select Ben’s Memorial Mile as your charity. A portion of your purchases will be donated to BMM.

Amazon's Charitable Website

Yard Signs Will Be Available!

We will have yard signs next spring for the 2020 Ben’s Memorial Mile! If you are interested in displaying one, email us at with your address, and we will drop one off!

Email Us

Book Available on Amazon

Jamie Silver (Ben’s mom) wrote a book about connecting with Ben. You can find Our Forever Ben: Letters from a Loving Mom to Her Son in Spirit, And His Poetic Replies via the link below.

Learn More

Ben’s Story

Benjamin Lee Silver was not only a son, brother, cousin, friend, teammate, captain, and fierce competitor—he was also a huge figure in his community: an enthusiastic and empathetic person who positively touched those around him. As a student at Downers Grove North High School, he was a four-time all-state athlete well known for his success on the track and cross-country course. Ben continued his athletic and academic pursuits at Miami University of Ohio, a top liberal-arts institution with a storied athletic history. However, during his college career he had a series of injuries and could not run, and his academics struggled as a result. He began acting erratically, and during the summer of his junior year he was diagnosed with schizophrenia, an often misunderstood and misdiagnosed disorder that typically arises in late adolescence and early adulthood. Though Ben’s struggles with this terrible illness eventually led to him taking his life in July 2015, the influence he had as a family member, friend, teammate, captain, and competitor lives on.

Join us this year for the third-annual running of Ben’s Memorial Mile, a community running event and celebration of life. Regardless of your ability, there will be an event for you! Join us in celebrating Ben’s life, your life, and all lives, all while raising awareness for mental health issues in the United States. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a former all-stater searching for a new personal best or a couch potato—there will be an event for you. Join us!

Read Ben’s Full Story Play Video

Where Your Money Goes

Brain & Behavior Research Foundation

The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation is committed to alleviating the suffering caused by mental illness by awarding grants that will lead to advances and breakthroughs in scientific research.


Hope for the Day


Hope For The Day (HFTD) focuses on suicide prevention and mental health education through self expression platforms to achieve outreach, education, and prevention. It’s ok not to be ok, have hope.

Hope for the Day-logo

National Alliance on Mental Illness

NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness.

Can't make it to an event? Here are two ways you can help!

Donate today or volunteer your time!


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