Willy's 13.1 Miles in Memory of Mom!

It appears I finally received my calling! It all began on the afternoon of August 1st, 2003. My life changed; it has a new meaning. On that day, as I entered a tailor shop, I noticed a brochure holder with a little boy's face on a pamphlet that read, "Would you walk 2 miles to save my life?" I opened the pamphlet and began to read how walking 2 miles would save his life. The event was called "Light the Night" by The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I thought it over for a few days and realized this was something I could do in memory of mom, whom I lost to lymphoma on April 10th, 2003. I also thought of how rewarding this would be and how good it would make me feel to save at least one life.

I registered to participate in "Light the Night" and was able to join the group from my church. One of the people I walked with is a lymphoma survivor. That experience was so rewarding that I registered to volunteer for the Society. Shortly after, I was called by the Society to assist at a water station at the Half Marathon in White Rock on November 1st, 2003. Again, I had a wonderful time, experience, and met some more awesome people, Debbie and Bruce. I asked Debbie about TNT and how I could possibly get more information to participate. Debbie proceeded to give me details and encouraged me to consider joining her at the 2004 Oklahoma Marathon. Later that week, Debbie e-mailed me the information I needed and I registered to attend the Team in Training (TNT) Dallas Kick-off on Sunday, November 9th, 2003.

On that day I made a serious commitment to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I joined TNT - the world's largest physical endurance and fundraising program.

On November 10th, 2003, I began a specific workout schedule designed by my coach, Mark Isrealson, to prepare for a 13.1 run/walk in Oklahoma City on April 25th, 2004. Not only am I doing this for mom, but for ALL the lives I can possibly save.

Along with the challenge of running and walking 13.1 miles, my fundraising goal is $1,800.00 which amounts to $137.40 per mile. These funds will be used for patient services, research, advocacy, and education on blood-related cancers. I not only appreciate your prayers and encouragement, but also your donations (however big or small) in the fight to eliminate these cancers.

The challenge I have yet to face does not compare to those stricken with and fighting cancer. I can only imagine how emotional it's going to be for me to cross that finish line as I imagine mom cheering for me from above!

My dear family and friends, please visit this website on a weekly basis as it will have updates of my training and fundraising goals.

Love to you all!

...and.....GO TEAM!