Sunday, May 8, 2011

One Weekend Away

My motto for this fundraiser has been the same for awhile, "It's Not About the Running". Yet, especially lately I find myself reflecting on Facebook posts and blog updates, where the topic is almost always running related. In some respects this makes sense, it is a Marathon 50 fundraiser after all. But I also don't want to lose sight of the real purpose for this fundraiser- to benefit the work being done by the Susan Mortensen Turley Foundation to benefit young adults with cancer.

The foundation was established in memory of my cousin, Susan. And while it is an extremely personal cause for myself and family, I know that not everyone had the honor of meeting Susan the 25 years she spent here with us. (If you haven't taken time to read through Susan's blog, I promise you it will be time well spent.) Consequently I'd like to find more ways to make this cause relatable to more people. Given that more than 70,000 young adults are diagnosed with cancer in the U.S. alone- I know this is a cause that touches many more people than just my family and friends blessed to know Susan. If any of you have ideas on specific ways I can make this happen, I would love to hear them.
One way Susan's Foundation is meeting its' mission is through a program called One Weekend Away . This program provides a no-cost opportunity for young adults with cancer and their family to escape the pressures that living with cancer can bring, and spend a restful and relaxing weekend together in a peaceful and beautiful location.

For some this weekend will be an opportunity to rest and re-charge to fight a successful battle against their disease. However, given that 10,000 of those 70,000 young adults will end up losing their battle with cancer, for many families this weekend away opportunity may one of their last family memories together. At a time when both finances and time are strained due to medical costs of treatment, I can't imagine a better gift to give a family during this difficult time.

There are so many great organizations working hard to fight cancer- particularly through research on ways to better treat or prevent the disease. This is all extremely important work, but of course work that won't be completed tomorrow. Susan's Foundation has chosen to recognize this and take a different route to support young adults with cancer while this important medical research continues. In the words of Susan's Foundation,
"We can't cure their disease, but we can provide relief and support during their battle".

The donations to sponsor marathon miles through this fundraiser go directly to support Susan's Foundation and this program. Thank you all for your past and continuing support!!

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