ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. (WJHL) — Milligan University hosted its first annual Eli Cramer Invitational to honor the cross-country runner who was killed while on a practice run earlier this year.

This invitational allowed friends and family of Cramer to honor and remember him. Many sported shirts saying “your mom’s favorite runner” and “Live like Eli”.

“Your mom’s favorite runner,” or YMFR, came from when Cramer once forgot his shirt for a meet and his mother brought him another. He wrote those words on the shirt in sharpie and ran the meet in it.

Milligan students wear Cramer’s YMFR shirts at the invitational.

“Living like Eli,” says a friend of Cramer, Christopher Trevino, “was being kind of anyone. Not discriminating against anyone of where you came from, what you look like, what you did. He was kind to everyone. He was always full of energy. He filled up the room.”

Trevino shared what Cramer’s reaction would have been to this invitational, saying he would be honored and humbled.

“I feel like he would have been humble in the fact that he didn’t think that he would deserve it, I guess per se he was like, he was just like us. And but that makes it all the more you know, that makes him all the more worthy for it. And he was such a great person,” Trevino said.

At the invitational, the university showcased a new memorial created to remember Cramer. Milligan University does not plan on stopping here.

Memorial plaque for Eli Cramer, placed on the cross country track.

Eli Cramer’s family is setting up a sports scholarship for Milligan Athletics Department. This scholarship will go to a Middle Tennessean who runs cross country with the school.

Milligan plans on continuing this invitational as an annual celebration. They hope it continues to grow throughout the years.