(Note: This story was written by St. Jude Representative Susie Tatum. Jenni is a loyal Monumental Volunteer with the goal of running her first Monumental in 2013.)
Imagine a race where hope marks the finish line. That's what local Indianapolis St. Jude Hero Jenni Russ describes the feeling to be, when she trains and fundraises to support St. Jude Children's Research Hospital's fight against childhood cancer!
"Being a St. Jude Hero brings amazing purpose to my endurance event participation," Jenni says. "Training for a half marathon takes energy, time, commitment and motivation. Knowing that I'm walking or running for a reason helps motivate me on those days I'm sore or don't post a good time in a training route. It helps give me a reason to get out there at all!"
St. Jude Hero Jenni Russ
Since opening more than 50 years ago, St. Jude has changed the way the world treats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. No family ever pays St. Jude for the care their children receives, and for every child treated here thousands more have been saved worldwide through St. Jude discoveries. The hospital has played a pivotal role in pushing U.S. pediatric cancer survival rates from 20 to 80 percent overall, and is the first and only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted to children.
With the many healthy children in her life, St. Jude is a great cause for Jenni to support, so that she can help those who are not as fortunate. "The fundraising program is easy to use, the incentives are great and I love knowing that the money I'm raising is truly making a difference to help fund treatment and research at St. Jude," she says. "When I ask family and friends to donate to my Heroes effort, I'm giving them the chance to be a part of something bigger than themselves. Some of them have run half-marathons, some of them can barely make it to the mailbox, but all my donors can feel like they are a part of that exciting race day!"
Overall, Jenni states it best by saying, "Being fit is a personal journey. Working toward a personal best time is something I do for me. Being a St. Jude Hero is something I do for others."
You too, can turn your race into something heroic by committing to be a St. Jude Hero for the 2013 Monumental Marathon. Not only will you be helping children like Eli, but you can also earn great incentives like free race entry, training support, St. Jude running gear, a race weekend Pasta dinner, hotel accommodations and much more! To learn more, visit www.fundraising.stjude.org/monumental or contact local St. Jude Representative Susie Tatum at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317-715-4102.