Hi Everyone. In case you've been sleeping under a rock, you know that I am determined to live a life full enough for both myself and my older brother who is no longer with us. My brother was a firm believer in pushing the limits and boundaries of what we are capable of. I can think of no better way to push the boundaries of what my body is capable of than running 26.2 miles in a country I have never visited, in a land where I do not speak the language, surrounded by people I do not know. Did I mention that while I do run, I am not particularly fond of it? :). This September I will be participating in the 45th running of the Berlin Marathon on behalf of Tuesday's Children. This is a wonderful organization that was forged in the aftermath of the horrific events that occurred on Tuesday, September 11, 2001. We all remember where were were that fateful morning. I was sitting in my first class of the day, "Crim Theory" when all four planes struck their targets. I was in that same class when the South Tower collapsed. It was only after I got to my second class of the day "History of Corrections", and found my entire class huddled around a portable stereo listening intently did I learn that something was not quite right in the world. It was so quiet, you could hear a pin drop. I asked "What's going on? What did I miss?". A wirey, yet good looking boy by the name of David responded "Two planes hit the Twin Towers this morning, one of which has already fallen, a third hit the Pentagon and a fourth went down in Pennsylvania". Just as he finished answering me, the second tower fell. The only sound that could be heard was the screaming coming from the broadcaster. Professor Spillane walked into the room, announced class was cancelled and walked right back out. My entire class sat huddled around that radio for the next hour. As the bell rang, we all parted ways, some of us crying, all of us in shock. Tuesday’s Children provides personalized support and a safe “landing place” to traumatized, grief-stricken children, families and communities left reeling from terrorism or traumatic loss. Their work begins when the emergency response ends – when the true, life-altering impact of the violence sets in. They remain long after other aid organizations and the media have gone. This is their promise to those they serve. Their programs enable those they serve to, over time, heal, recover and ultimately thrive. Tuesday’s Children proudly offers the same life-changing programs for the military community as they did for those who lost a loved one on September 11th. Their Military Initiative guides families of the fallen beyond grief into next steps towards a lifetime of healing. Not only does Tuesday's Children operate domestically, but internationally as well. Project COMMON BOND, an international initiative, has brought together over 700 teenagers and young adults from over 25 nations and territories and this is just in the last 10 years! These teens and young adults engage in a dialogue of healing and community-building activities that enhance interpersonal communication and conflict negotiation skills, promote dignity, and empower them as agents for positive change in their lives and communities. Each summer, new Project COMMON BOND participants attend a summer symposium focused on global leadership activities, peace building and negotiation, skill building, and collaborative and therapeutic arts - music, drama, movement and sports. Project COMMON BOND also holds activities throughout the year for participants, chaperones, and staff members. These serve as an interactive forum for follow-up with past participants on their experience with the program and how they have incorporated the program’s lessons into their everyday life as well as orientation for new participants and chaperones. In January 2016, Project COMMON BOND launched a Winter Session in conflict negotiation for alumni of the summer symposium. Project COMMON BOND also includes a program for participant’s chaperones, international activists from private organizations, NGO’s, universities, and governmental agencies who work with victims of terror in their home countries. The Chaperone Program brings together these individuals to share best practices and learn more about Tuesday’s Children’s Long Term Healing Model. Chaperones return home with tools and experiences to better help them serve their communities. Since Tuesday, September 11, 2011, there have been: 61,000+ global terrorist incidents 140,000+ deaths caused by acts of terrorism 18,000+ military deaths 180+ mass shootings in the US AND THESE NUMBERS ARE GROWING EVERYDAY!!! Tuesday's Children has helped: 15,000+ individuals impacted by 9/11 and other tragedies 2,000+ individuals in local communities including more than 1,000 families in Newtown, CT following the Sandy Hook school shooting 20+ Nations directly impacted by terrorism or violent extremism. These numbers, while impressive, are just a start. Think of how many more families, how many more individuals that can be helped through this incredible organization!!! This is where you come in!!! If you have a few dollars to spare, please consider donating! In this day and age, where School shootings are becoming more rampant, think of the families that can be helped through your generous donation to Tuesday's Children. Not only will you be giving some much needed funding to a very well deserving charity, you will also be helping me knock a HUGE item off of my bucket list. Two birds with one stone! Think of it this way, you are investing in my sweat equity. I will partake in an arduous 26.2 mile trek through the streets of Berlin while you relax in the comfort of your home, stateside. :). It's a win-win-win situation for all parties involved! In the words of Todd Beamer, one of the many heroes from Flight 93, "Lets Roll".