Speech speech

In 2006, when I did my first 5k, I swore I’d never do a marathon.  By 2007, when I did my first marathon, I decided I needed to do one in every state.

There’s no way I would have the courage to face that challenge without the influence of my Uncle Bill, who taught me that even the most overwhelming obstacle could be tackled with a positive attitude and determination.  Unfortunately, 10 years ago next month, I lost Uncle Bill to lung cancer.  So choosing to join DetermiNation for Rock’n’Roll Mardi Gras was a perfect fit for me, since it benefits the American Cancer Society and will be my first marathon in Louisiana.

We’ve all faced a lot of challenges to get here.  Juggling workout schedules with family and personal obligations, logistics and planning, chafing, blisters, fundraising . . . and we are all here (hopefully with a smile) ready to celebrate our achievements and run that 26.2 or 13.1 miles tomorrow. 

I also faced another challenge over the past year – the challenge of making the transition from cancer patient to cancer survivor.  You see, ONE year ago next month, I lost something of my own to cancer – my thyroid.  After my treatments, I made a commitment to spend the rest of my life helping other cancer patients make that transition from survivor to patient something positive and rewarding. 

I feel that my work over the past few months will be complete if I have helped even one person make that transition from survivor to patient something positive.  Because that’s a challenge no one should have to face alone.   And I believe that the American Cancer Society shares this philosophy with me.  

Whether this is your first marathon or your fifty-first, I’m SO SO excited to take those first steps toward my commitment with all of you tomorrow.  

See you at the start line!

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