Runner at Heart

Hi, it’s me. Jen. I thought this could be a cool place to tell you a little story.

The Cause

It’s October 28, 2008, five months, 21 days, 23 hours and 30 minutes until I step on the starting line for the 2009 Boston Marathon. The next five months will be challenging, to say the least. I will run hundreds of miles through Boston’s icy winter and raise $5,000. This will be the most grueling winter of my life and I couldn’t be more excited. I’m honored to be part of something amazing. Together, the Dana Farber team and I will raise millions of dollars and run thousands of miles in honor of cancer survivors, patients, and in memory of lives lost to cancer. Our team plans to raise $4.8 million and the DFMC directs 100% of funds raised to the Barr Program, which enables gifted young scientists at the leading edge of discovery to achieve better cure rates and to enhance patients’ quality of life.

The Inspiration

Two years ago I met Andy, the most wonderful person in my life. Then I met his mother, the strong, brave woman who helped make him who he is today. Susan Milk is an 8 year cancer survivor; she’s a fighter. Their story is truly an inspiration. I say their story because not only is her strength incredible, but also their family’s. I can barely put it into words—and won’t attempt to. Believe me.

Although Susan and Andy inspired me to run this marathon with their dedication (this will be Andy’s second marathon for Dana Farber) and determination, I don’t only run for them. I run for every person who loves someone with cancer, for everyone who has lost a loved one to cancer and for everyone battling it.

In the Beginning

I started running in sixth grade. I remember when I ran my first mile in 6:02 around the football field; excitement about being considered for the J.V. cross country whirled around me while I came down from the runner’s high.

I was a track “star” and a distance runner. I ran my fastest 5K in 18:57. I loved running, the competition and the team. Yet, after high school nothing drew me back to racing. Throughout the last couple of years I’ve wanted to get back into the team spirit of things, but I couldn’t think of anything I really wanted to do. Until now.

I am excited to train, meet other Dana Farber team members, bond and beat our fundraising goal.

Please help us reach our ultimate finish line.

Thank you for your support and love.

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