Gail Hintz, of Ballwin, Missouri, had two good reasons to run her first half marathon in 2016 to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. She wanted to improve her health, but more important, St. Jude saved the life of her good friend’s son.
“Honestly, I hated running my whole life until 2015 and never would have thought I’d decide to start running at this point in my life,” Hintz said. But when she learned she could do something for her health and benefit St. Jude, her decision was easy.
So, at age 57, Hintz, a classically-trained pianist, accompanist and vocal coach — who had only run one 5K in 2015 — decided she would train and participate in the St. Louis Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon in October 2016. She also chose to run as a St. Jude Hero with her good friend, Susan, a long time runner and St. Jude Hero.
Susan’s son was diagnosed with biphenotypic leukemia in elementary school. Now a high school junior, he is cancer free.
Getting support to run as a St. Jude Hero was easy, Hintz said. She put the word out on Facebook and emailed friends and family that she was running to benefit St. Jude “and got a great response,” ultimately raising $1,645.
“I was so happy to help raise a small amount for this great cause,” she said.
Adding to the fun of running with her friend and raising funds for St. Jude was the great race experience, Hintz said. The weather, the atmosphere and the location were perfect.
“Seeing the sun come up over the St. Louis Arch is always beautiful,” she said.