In March we ran the NYC Half, and now we're going for the full.
On November 5th, I will run the New York City Marathon in honor of my grandfather, Dr. Bart Maggio. We lost him on January 16, 2016 to Pancreatic Cancer. This year Pancreatic Cancer surpassed Breast Cancer and became the third leading cause of cancer related deaths in the United States, with a five-year survival rate at just 9%.
Most of my family never realized just how sick my Pop Pop was because he remained strong and positive throughout his chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Never once did I hear him complain, he didn't even talk about it. During family gatherings and holidays, my Pop Pop always took an interest in conversation and supported my endeavors, with an encouraging smile and gentle squeeze of the hand, regardless of his own discomfort and hardships. A particularly special moment in time for me was when he rearranged his treatments (unbeknownst to me at the time) to attend my graduation from the College of Charleston in May 2015, again with that smile on his face and twinkle in his eye, traveling to South Carolina to show his support.
Now I’m supporting him. My grandfather was a surgeon who healed so many with helping hands and a happy heart. I’m running in his honor to help raise awareness and funds for patients who are battling Pancreatic Cancer themselves, and for families and friends who have lost a loved one too soon. I am running with Project Purple to help find a cure and help provide funding for critical Pancreatic Cancer research. I will work hard, just like my Pop Pop did.