Readers of this blog may know that I am a leukemia survivor and have participated in a few triathlons and other endurance events. By joining with Team in Training, I have an opportunity to use these events to raise awareness and money to fund crucial research to find cures for various blood cancers through the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). In just 25 years, Team in Training has raised 875 million dollars for leukemia and lymphoma research. (See the purple box to the right for details about my fundraising.)
On July 12, 2006, I was diagnosed with Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia. At the time, I was a Christian school teacher earning about a third of what a public school teacher makes during a year. In other words, not very much. And since I couldn’t teach for the first few months of the school year, the school could not afford to pay me. We had virtually no income for several months other than some donations from generous individuals. And while insurance took care of the vast majority of our medical expenses, it would not cover the cost of some supplies I needed once I was released from the hospital. The LLS stepped in and paid for these necessities for us. We were told that they didn’t normally cover the items we needed, but they made an exception in our case.
One of my goals was to complete a sprint triathlon within one year of being diagnosed. I failed to finish the Galena (IL) triathlon in May 2007. Just a few weeks later on June 10, 2007, I completed the Green Bay Triathlon and reached my goal. After taking a few years off from these competitions, I started up again last year and was reminded of just how fun and encouraging they can be. I finished the swim portion of a half-Ironman in August 2012 and did a 5K in October. Earlier this month I completed my first half-marathon (13.1 miles), and I am planning to do several more races this year, including the Aurora BayCare Olympic Triathlon (Green Bay) in June and the swim portion of the Muncie, Indiana half-Ironman in July.
I signed up with Team in Training for a few reasons. First, I want to do my part to help the LLS continue their work to develop cures for these awful diseases. Second, I want the LLS to be able to help others who are in situations similar to what I was in. Third, I’m excited to be part of a team that will improve my ability to complete triathlons and other endurance events while raising vital funds for a great cause.
I need your help. I am currently committed to raising $800 to participate in the Cincinnati Half-Marathon on October 19. However, I would really like to raise a little more than twice that amount ($1800) so that I can register for the Nations Triathlon in Washington D.C. in September instead (which benefits the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society). I donated the first $75 and now I need your help.
Would you consider partnering with me to attain these goals? All donations to Team in Training are tax deductible and at least 75% goes directly to the mission of the LLS. Donations can be made on my Team in Training fundraising page or feel free to leave a comment below for me if you’d prefer to send a check, and I’ll let you know the options for that.
Any donation you can make is greatly appreciated. Also, if you donate $50 or more, I will send you a complimentary copy of my book, God and Cancer. Check out the book’s Amazon page for details and reviews.