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Estrada Disputes Umstattd’s Attack Mailer

© Leesburg Today - 11/02/2015

William A. ""Will"" Estrada said this weekend that his opponent for the Leesburg District seat on the Loudoun Board of Supervisors has spread a falsehood on a mailing sent to town residents.

Leesburg District Democratic nominee and town Mayor Kristen C. Umstattd had the two-sided mailer distributed last week. One side touts her background, but the other includes several contentions about Estrada, a Republican. And one of those is that he didn't finish this year's Army Ten-Miler race, a claim Estrada disputes.

""Kristen's opponent boasted on his campaign Facebook page that he ran the 2015 Army Ten-Miler,"" the mailing, which includes a photo of Estrada, says. ""He even held up, for the camera, a finisher's medal, which you only get when you finish the race. Trouble is, according to the U.S. Army, he didn't finish the race. And that isn't his medal.""

Estrada, however, issued a statement Friday night, saying that he did in fact finish the popular race, held in Arlington County and Washington, DC, on Oct. 11.

""I inadvertently mistyped my last name to 'Estrata' when I registered for the race,"" he said in the emailed statement. ""A simple phone call from my opponent to me could have cleared this up. Anyone who is curious can go to the Army Ten-Miler webpage and search for 'Estrata.' They will find that Will Estrata, a 32-year-old male resident of Leesburg, VA, completed the 2015 Army Ten-Miler in 97 minutes.

""What makes this attack so despicable is that I ran this race with family and friends (as we have run previous Army Ten-Milers) to commemorate my wife's brother-in-law, SSG Adam L. Dickmyer, who was killed in action in Kandahar, Afghanistan, on October 28, 2010. It is sad that my opponent's mailer hit mailboxes two days after the 5-year anniversary of him giving his life in service to our nation.""

Umstattd, herself a Navy veteran, issued her own statement Monday morning, claiming that nothing Estrada claimed ""disputes"" any of her flier's contentions.

""I don't believe his claim that he finished the race-and Army records show that he did not-but, if he is telling the truth about this, then he would be admitting to violating the rules of the race by filing an application under a false name. The Army Ten-Miler rules make it very clear that, by filing a false application, he forfeits anything he might have otherwise won. My understanding is that these rules are set up to protect the Army from those who try to evade the waivers that runners are required to sign in order to participate. Either Mr. Estrada is trying to bamboozle the voters, or he's trying to bamboozle the Army.""

Estrada also said in the mailer that he has always made clear that he likes and respects the mayor, and he told Leesburg Today on Monday that this latest mailer was the first one sent by either Leesburg District hopeful that was really negative.

""My opponent's mailer is a complete distortion of who I am,"" the Republican said in his prepared statement. ""I feel sorry for her that she believes winning higher political office is so important to her that she would resort to this.""

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