March 17, 2023
Jason Mackey receives the Lynden “Committed through the Last Mile” Red Lantern Award
Veteran Iditarod musher Jason Mackey (bib #20) of Knik, Alaska, is the final musher to reach Nome today at 17:03 with 5 dogs in harness.
In its second year as a sponsor, Lynden chose to honor the Red Lantern finisher for their perseverance and commitment to completing the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race through unexpected challenges. According to historians, awarding the red lantern as the final finisher has become an Alaska tradition in sled dog racing.
As the Red Lantern winner, Mackey receives $1,000 and has the honor of extinguishing the widow’s lamp on the burled arch in Nome. The symbol of the widow’s lamp dates back to when roadhouses were used in Alaska and extinguishing the lamp is a signal that no other mushers are out on the trail. Jason Mackey ran the Iditarod this year with both his brother and mother’s ashes in his sled from Willow to Nome, in an emotional and meaningful race up the Iditarod Trail.
Lynden’s “Committed through the Last Mile” Red Lantern Award will be re-presented to Mackey at the Iditarod finishers banquet on Sunday, March 19, 2023.