BENEFITING: IMPACT Melanoma
ORGANIZER: IMPACT Melanoma
EVENT: Boston Marathon 2014
EVENT DATE: Apr 21, 2014
Thank you for visiting my fundraiser page. I am honored to run the 2014 Boston Marathon with Team Running for Cover. I first ran Boston in 1989 with my college roommate, Ronie-Richele Garcia-Johnson. We were sophomores in college, former track runners with little marathon training experience. All we knew was that we had to be part of this legendary race. We cheered with thousands of runners at the start in Hopkinton, relished the tunnel of sound in Wellesley, and encouraged each other up the hills in Newton before finally reaching that finish line. The memory of that day brings me both joy and sadness. Dear Ronie passed away from melanoma in April 2003 at age 34. She left behind a loving family, including two young daughters, and countless friends and colleagues who treasured her.
And so, twenty-five years later, I am returning to Boston to run in memory of Ronie and to fight the disease that took her in the prime of her life. I run to raise awareness that according to current estimates, 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetimes. I run to spread the word about melanoma, the most common form of cancer for young adults. I run to share the news that the five-year survival rate when melanoma is detected and treated early is 99%. I run to encourage others to protect themselves from the sun and undergo regular skin checks to reduce the incidence of melanoma.
After the tragedy of Marathon Monday last year, I know there is no place that I would rather be on April 21st than running the Boston Marathon. If Ronie were here, she would be by my side, honoring the race, the runners, the volunteers, and the spectators who make this race such a magical experience. But Ronie is not here because of melanoma. And so I will run for her, savoring each step of Boston 2014 and savoring the memories of Boston '89, when I ran with Ronie by my side.