Sunday, July 25, 2010

A Hot Silent Mile

Yesterday morning, the fall marathon, triathlon, and century teams from Richmond and Charlottesville - along with patient honorees and others affected by cancer - gathered at 6:30AM for our twice annual Team Silent Mile. This is always moving, as we hear from so many people affected by cancers of all kinds - many survivors and then also those who have been affected through the cancers of friends and family members. The most poignant yesterday was Robin's story. She survived cancer 30 years ago at age 18, and learned last week that she has a secondary cancer that was probably caused by radiation received to save her life so long ago. Her choices - have her leg amputated mid-thigh or have the femur removed and replaced with an artificial one. This will be followed by six months of chemo. It really sucks to hear about stories like this. Cancer sucks! What a choice - lose your leg or go through all the pain and misery of an artificial bone. Both choices have major drawbacks. I feel for this fine person. It is so unfair. She has been an athlete all her life and continues doing triathlons for TNT, and was training for the Nation's Tri. Now, three people will do a leg in her honor. Ed will do the swimming, her husband will do the biking, and a good friend - who's wife has brain cancer - will do the run.

Lanie's story was also sad. She is a young woman with a very lethal brain cancer. She is doing well so far, but it has been tough. She clearly has a great spirit. Both Lanie's and Robin's names were on my Seattle race shirt last month.

It was a hot, hot day, already 80 degrees at 6AM, and it reached 105 yesterday. I walked 3.5 miles with my friend, teammate, fellow Hodgikin's survivor, and fellow marathoner Kristi, and it was great to catch up. Our first mile was done in silence to honor and remember those who fight this fight against the beast. Here are some photos of the morning.

The big combined team gathers in a circle prior to getting started:

Four time cancer survivor Ed (blue shirt), who recently lost part of his left foot to melanoma, talks about his experience.

The runners start to leave the area and head out for the first mile in silence.

Members of the walk team walking in silence

Cycle and/or triathletes passing the walkers
LLS staff has put out numerous posters about the mission along the first mile. Here is Kristi posing by one of these:

And here am I, in my green Seattle half-marathon shirt. It is hard to believe that this event was four weeks ago already!

Holly and Amy from the triathlon team cycle towards us. Holly is the mom of Emma, one of our February Miracle Girls!


LWH said...

Thanks for coming out, Art. It was hot and gross out there, for sure, but we sure appreciated having you with us for a while!

Racn4acure said...

My pleasure, Leslie. It was good to see you and the rest of the team. Thanks for all you do!