BENEFITING: THOMAS G LABRECQUE FOUNDATION
ORGANIZER: THOMAS G LABRECQUE FOUNDATION
My Dad was diagnosed with lung cancer at age 65. After surgery, he was diagnosed again at 70 and 75, ultimately removing an entire lung. He summoned all his strength to survive 5 more years – an extraordinary feat in and of itself – passing away in December 2015 from comordities that likely attacked his weakened state. My Dad's mother, who died years before him, also caught her cancer early and was able to eradicate it. Early detection allowed my Dad and grandmother to live longer. If detected too late, the five-year survival rate for lung cancer is just 4%. Fourteen years ago, my wife sadly lost her mother at age 58 to inoperable, aggressive lung cancer. She was gone not more than 60 days after it was first diagnosed. That was a life-jarring wake-up call for my wife and I months before we had planned to start expanding our family.
I joined the racing community for the competition. I signed up for the Marathon to run for the memories of those I lost to lung cancer. Running has given me time to reflect and it has helped me stay connected to my Dad – not in a spiritual way, but in a contemplative, meditative state while running. Now, my Dad is that "eye in the sky" whether during monotonous training runs or amidst the energy of organized races. Often, he invites my grandmother and mother-in-law to watch as well, so long as he keeps his aisle seat in the front row! While their eyes are on me this November, my eyes will be wide open.
The Thomas G. Labrecque Foundation is committed to preventing lung cancer through education and research. To date, the Foundation has raised about $10 million dollars for lung cancer research and awareness. Since 2007, the Foundation has been focused on funding research to detect lung cancer at its earliest and most treatable stage. Since 2009, 100% of funds raised have gone to fund research, not overhead.