I am so ready for this!!!
April 26, 2016
In 2011 I ran the Lincoln Marathon for the very first time. I had never run a marathon before and had no idea what to expect. At mile 23 a good friend of mine named Mark Voelte jumped in and ran with me for about 2 miles. Although we had talked about the race A LOT I had no idea that he was coming to the race nor did I know that he was there just to make sure that I was doing ok and was in good spirits. He had no other reason to drive the 50 miles to Lincoln that morning and the fact that he cared so much had such an impact on me. Those 2 miles with him have stayed in my heart ever since. We had an amazing friendship and I loved him like he was family. He was my confidant when I needed someone to listen, my favorite country dance partner, and one of many who cared for me after I had open heart surgery. The picture on this page is of this wonderful man, his girlfriend Diana, and his daughter Nicole.
Unfortunately I could do nothing for him when he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in June of 2015. I spent as much time as I could with him after the diagnosis...talking about options, life, and the love he had for his family and friends. I said goodbye to Mark barely a month later as he passed from this world.
As I planned my racing schedule for 2016 I came across Project Purple and could think of no better way to honor the memory of the man that joined me on my very first marathon 5 years ago and I hope you will support me as I raise money to help others like Mark and his family.
Project Purple's mission: to beat pancreatic cancer. Our Method: participating in the best road races in the world. The Lincoln Marathon and Half is amazing! This race is at the top of our list for all time favorite marathons, from the warm and welcoming people of Nebraska, the excitement and energy of the organizers and participants, and the love and support of the Lincoln Track Club. We are so excited and proud to be the official charity of this event for a second year. Our team will be running to support our three programs, listed below.
In the last four years, our charity has provided $500K in grants to top medical centers specializing in the study of pancreatic cancer. We have carefully selected institutions based on the quality of their work and their researchers. Recipients include Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Tufts Medical Center, University of Nebraska Medical Center, NYU, and Columbia. Grants have also been awarded to postdoctoral students and professional researchers, to support studies in early detection methods, a cure, and a better understanding of this mysterious and deadly disease.
Patient Financial Aid
Project Purple helps support families and individuals dealing with the financial burden of pancreatic cancer. Patients who are currently battling are given support with medical bills, living expenses, and travel. We also give care packages to patients to provide comfort during hospital visits.
For the past three years, Project Purple has helped undergraduate, graduate, and nursing students achieve their academic goals by providing scholarships. These awards are given to bright, passionate students whose lives have been adversely affected by pancreatic cancer. Many have lost parents or other close relatives to the disease, others had the disease themselves.
For more information about these programs and what you can do to help support our mission, visit us online at www.run4projectpurple.org. You can also find us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram.