Thursday, August 27, 2009

Thank You Virginia Beach Half Marathon Team

On Sunday, September 6, teams from Virginia and all over will converge at Virginia Beach to participate in the Rock ‘N’ Roll Half-Marathon. For anyone running or walking as one of the Purple People from Team in Training, it is a lot more involved than merely traveling 13.1 miles on foot that morning. Because they have raised, in the past few months, hundreds of thousand of dollars to support the mission of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society: to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families.

For anyone from Team Richmond, Team Virginia, or any team who will be in that race, I thank you deeply as a blood cancer survivor. I am alive today only because of cancer research and treatments, and you are helping to give others that chance. Thank you so much, and remember to enjoy the fruits of all that hard work you have expended since May. Have a great time at the race with your teammates, and remember to feel pride when they hand you that 13.1 TNT pin afterwards at the tent. You are checking in at the TNT tent, aren’t you? AREN’T YOU?

Special thanks to your coaches, mentors, and LLS staff that have worked so hard to help you get to this point. And thanks to each of you for making a difference. Have a great time!

"To the Virginia Beach Team"

You’ve worked so very hard, putting in lots of miles
In hot, muggy weather, but usually with smiles
And now you can see that your goal's within reach
In ten days, you’ll go thirteen-one at the beach

You’ve been out before dawn, running while it’s still dark
Meeting teammates and coaches for a run from the park
But it’s not about running, for you have a great cause:
Defeating cancers that attack without pity or pause

Others rise before dawn, but wake up filled with dread
For later this day, in a chair or a bed
Into their veins deadly poisons will flow
Will they live strong or die? Right now, they don’t know.

For those who can’t run you are running your race
Helping them reach for the dreams that they chase
To live as survivors, to be healthy and strong
But for too many with cancer, the odds are so long

In the fight against cancer, you’ve now joined the ranks
We survivors, all over, give you humble thanks
And remember next weekend as you fret about pace
It's not chip-time that counts but your time at the race!

Art Ritter
August 27, 2009

GO TEAM!

4 comments:

TNTcoach Ken said...

Now he's a poet! Great prose.........

Racn4acure said...

Thanks Ken.

For a long time I'm a poet
But just did not know it.

Leslie said...

Okay, you made me cry, Art! Thanks for the support this season, you're a tremendous inspiration! Yours is one of the names going on my jersey next weekend!

Racn4acure said...

Thanks for the comment Leslie. I am glad you are inspired. It is an honor for me that you are wearing my name. Have a great race.

It is I who get inspired each season by the dedication and sacrifice of all of the participants. Art