The Family (Or most of them)

The Family (Or most of them)
The Family

June 18, 2007


From the massive lineups for the loo at 6:30 a.m....
And 12,927 people listening for the start gun after months of training to run the full (26.2 miles), half or relay marathons, the 2.6-mile Super Run, the 10km walk...

...To the scores of people who accomplish their goal of finishing, each of them with fantastic stories to tell of how they did it and why it was important to them.

Fathers and daughters, mothers and sons, two-year-olds and 82-year-olds, breast cancer survivors and are some of them that made me smile.

This is Dorothy from Birch River. She just turned 80 and is a breast cancer survivor. It was her 10th half marathon. Eighty of her friends and family ran with her.

I can't remember this man's name but his six-month-old son Mathieu caught a ride the last 200 metres.
He ran for (below) his dead sister, his dead father-in-law and a friend who committed suicide.
This guy's name is Luke, I think.
He's 30 and is a quadriplegic from a tumor that grew in his spine.
He's wheelchairing because he supports the charity all the money raised goes to -- the intellectually disabled.

And this guy is just a dead ringer for David Letterman, although I couldn't get a shot of him head on to prove it.
He was one of the thousands of volunteers that lined the course all through Winnipeg.


  1. Excellent post! I love seeing all the normal folk Out There Doing It.

    I'm glad you included personal stories along with the pictures.

  2. Those everyday people who transform themselves into marathoners absolutely astound me. I can't imagine running or even walking that distance.

    Of course we all remember that Phidippides, the Greek soldier, who ran nonstop from the town of Marathon to Athens (34.5 kms)to announce that the Persians were defeated...
    dropped dead right after he wheezed out his message!

    Unlike most other four legged vertebrates that were designed to run from predators, we have evolved INTO predators, and the human body was not ever really designed for running. In the animal kingdom we are s l o w.

    The number one problem is this backbone that we have adapted from an original horizontal design.
    Our knees and feet are certainly poorly equipped to sustain a lifetime of running away from Lions. We have come to rely upon our brains to outsmart the faster animals that we want to eat and that want to eat us.

    So in my books it is a miracle that some humans can run as far they do and fight back the pain, exhaustion, and cross that finish line.

    That is something to be proud of, especially without a large, multicellular, carnivore chasing you. Bravo.

  3. Shelley:

    Thanks, girl! "Doing It" isn't the first thing that popped into my head to describe it, but OK...

    Homo Bipedal Creature:

    Thanks, Mr. Evolution, for putting this into such great context. You're right on, Man. I think it's a miracle too.

  4. Love it.....
    sport bringing the world together, and supporting worthy causes... 2 suicides in a single family, That is unimaginable, i would not wish that on anyone.

    Doing it in a wheel chair thats determinism.

    When I was in central Australia, there was a paraplegic who went arm over arm up the chain on the way up Uluru (Ayers Rock), thats guts!

    Ahhhh the warm fuzzies in life:)

  5. This is really inspiring. Another blogger, Dan, walked a marathon in New York for suicide prevention too.

  6. What a neat story, Chris. What these people did was fantastic, and that you are giving them the credit they are due is fantastic as well.

  7. running, isn't it amazing that people do this and call it fun? I bet they're not even paid. Have they not heard of the invention called a motorcar, or come to that a bicycle or even a horse!

  8. Aidan:

    If I said in the post that there were two suicides, or inferred it, that's not what I meant.

    The guy on the right did, the older guy in the middle died a year ago of natural causes and this runner's sister, a master-corporal in the Canadian army who got him into running, died of an embolism in Alaska -- while running.

    This kind of physical achievement is of course physical, but they'll all say it's mental/emotional more than anything...


    Excellent...the money raised from this -- more than $5 million over the 29 years it's been held -- goes towards programs and housing that gets intellectually challenged people out of the so-called "mental facilities" and into the community.


    Thanks! And thanks!

    What are those Montana mountain formations with the eye in the needle called? Hoodoos?

    I think that's what they call them north of western Montana, in Alberta...

    Regardless, lovely mountains...:-)

    Your Zigginess:

    Yeah, I don't get running. It's too monotonous and boring for me. But I sure do admire them.

    And they're in much better shape than I am...

  9. well WW the pictures I've seen of your flesh don't seem 1/2 bad! Actually, thinking about it, isn't it time you showed us those knees again?

  10. Ziggi:

    I'd rather be just half bad than all bad! My right knee is a mess, totally reconstructed.

    If my paper ever runs my story on knee injuries in sports, with the pic, I'll blog about it!

  11. Great photos and words of inspiration! It's awesome to witness fellow human beings of all ages overcoming odds and/or simply sharing life's journey with each other. The power of community is incredible.

  12. ty WW HUGGGGGGZ!


  13. woohoo- congrats to all of them!!! wonderful pictures w.w.!!

  14. Clare:

    Thanks, and welcome back! The power is incredible and being in the midst of it all is sensational.


    I dunno why the hugs, but I'll take 'em!


    Thx, you. I was figurin' maybe I'd do the 2.3 mile Super Run next year and work my way up...

  15. Within and/or Without:

    "Out There Doing It" is a euphemism for getting motivated and doing extraordinary things. :)

  16. I have taken part in various marathons. The feelings those evoke is indescribable.

  17. Anonymous7:15 p.m.

    Some of those people amaze and humble me who enter with the odds stacked against them. What courage they have!
    Have a good weekend!


  18. Shelley:

    I know what you meant...I was just making a bad joke about another inference...(*Runs Away*)


    Really? Congratulations...


    Maybe I'm Amazed too...

  19. I loved this post. I agree that all of those people are so inspirational. I've always had a special respect for marathon runners and even moreso for marathon runners with a cause.

    Did you run also?


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