From Utah to New Hampshire. Massachusetts to California. Ranging in age from 23 all the way up to 64. 23 individuals from across the United States joined our Les Turner ALS Foundation family on Sunday, October 7 to run the Bank of America Chicago Marathon as members of our Team Race for ALS program.
Together, they raised over $41,000 all in the name of supporting people living with ALS and the Les Turner ALS Foundation.
Some ran in honor. Some ran in memory. And some ran for both. One of those runners was Blas Bolivar.
Blas first learned about ALS when one of his best friends was diagnosed with the disease and now, Blas has yet another friend living with ALS.
Running a marathon wasn’t something Blas ever expected, but after seeing two people he loved dearly affected by the disease, he felt he had to do something.
“If you’d have told me in April I’d be writing this, I’d laugh at you. This day was a result of months of training – and craziness if you ask anyone around me.I am not a runner and the longest distance I had run before was only a 5k. But my desire to help this organization was so big I was able to do it.
Eric, a great friend who I loved and miss so much was taken too soon by this horrible disease. And now, my good friend Matt is currently battling ALS.
If someone is thinking of running the marathon, I would tell them the experience is incredibly amazing. To say this day changed my life would be an understatement. I will remember the feeling of running through the Chicago neighborhoods forever.
I remember the first day I trained, we had a five minute walk with one minute of jogging and 90 seconds of walking. It was pure torture! I accumulated miles little by little and, finally, I ran my first marathon!
As I reflect on the many things I am thankful for in my life, I want to take a moment to thank the Les Turner ALS Foundation for everything you do. I am thankful to simply have the ability and health to wake up every day and the choice to run for those who can’t.”
We are so proud of all our incredible runners for crossing the finish line and grateful for all they do to help raise money and awareness for people living with ALS.
If you are inspired by Blas’ story and are interested in running the 2019 Chicago Marathon, contact Shelby. We are already recruiting and can help you get started on your journey to running for those who can’t.