MEMPHIS, Tennessee (June 4, 2014) – In observance of National Running Day today, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®, which is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other deadly diseases, is calling all those daring enough to run 26 miles to lace up their running shoes. It’s approximately 26 weeks from the St. Jude Memphis Marathon® Weekend presented by Juice Plus+®, leaving plenty of time to sign up through general registration and train for the fun on Saturday, December 6.
Earlier this week the half-marathon sold out among general registrants, but there are a limited number of spaces available to those runners who are willing to run for a reason by fundraising as St. Jude Heroes for a minimum of $500. General registration space still remains for the other races, including the marathon, 5K, family fun run and kids marathon.
Cindy and David Bedford of Dallas, Texas, will be among the thousands of St. Jude Heroes who are running with charitable hearts to raise critical funds that support the lifesaving mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
The Bedfords can relate to the battles fought by St. Jude patient families. David Bedford has stage IV colorectal cancer, yet he continues to exercise and work full-time while receiving treatment for the past year and a half. Cancer does not break their spirits or shatter their hope. As members of presenting sponsor Team Juice Plus, they have raised more than $6,000 for the past three years, so families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food.
“It’s a race for life, so supporting the research to not only help sustain life, but also help cure childhood cancer is important to us,” said Cindy Bedford. As a certified coach in eight sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, she understands the importance of fitness and values organizations making a difference by changing history through healthcare. “These kids don’t give up and we’re not giving up either.”
St. Jude won’t stop either and is working to drive the overall survival rate for childhood cancer to 90 percent in the next decade.
“Every step taken, mile tracked and dollar raised help kids outrun deadly diseases like childhood cancer,” said Richard Shadyac Jr., CEO of ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. “I am so inspired by our St. Jude Heroes who push through their own challenges to support the kids of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and donate their energy and time to raise money while training to reach their fitness goals.”
Regardless of their endurance levels, St. Jude Heroes go above and beyond to help generate awareness and raise funds, helping St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital fight the most aggressive childhood cancers.
St. Jude Heroes can earn great incentives such as the official race day singlet, entrance to the VIP race-day lounge and access to an exclusive St. Jude Heroes Pasta Party on Friday night before the big race on Saturday. Additionally, St. and reach their personal goals.
Last year, St. Jude Heroes raised more than $8.2 million to benefit St. Jude. Learn more or register for the race as a St. Jude Hero.
About the St. Jude Memphis Marathon® Weekend
The St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend is one of the only major marathons to support a single charity — that is, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®. Race participants called St. Jude Heroes have raised more than $33.9 million since the event’s inception in 2002, so families never receive a bill from St. Jude for anything, so they can focus on helping their child live.
Produced in partnership with the Memphis Runners Track Club and presenting sponsor Juice Plus+, the event features a marathon, half marathon, marathon relay, 5K, kids marathon and family fun run. Learn more.
About St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other deadly diseases. St. Jude has the world’s best survival rates for the most aggressive childhood cancers, and treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to 80 percent since we opened more than 50 years ago.
St. Jude is working to drive the overall survival rate for childhood cancer to 90 percent in the next decade. St. Jude freely shares the breakthroughs we make, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food — because all a family should worry about is helping their child live. Visit us online or follow St. Jude on Facebook and Twitter.
About Juice Plus+®
Juice Plus+ has been the presenting sponsor of the St. Jude Memphis Marathon® Weekend since 2002. With juice powder concentrates from 25 different fruits, vegetables and grains, Juice Plus+ is whole food based nutrition in an easy to take capsule or chewable form that helps bridge the gap between what you should eat and what you do eat every day.
In addition to supporting the St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend through monetary donations, Juice Plus+ hosts the Spirit Station at the 10-mile mark in front of the St. Jude Target House, where volunteers cheer on race participants with song and dance. Both St. Jude and Juice Plus+ are deeply invested in children’s health. In support of children everywhere, Juice Plus+ created the Juice Plus+ Children’s Foundation and Children’s Health Study. Learn more about the Juice Plus+ Company mission of inspiring healthy living around the world.
About Landers Ford
Landers Ford is the official vehicle of the St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend. Landers Ford is making a $25 donation in the name of anyone who test drives a Ford vehicle.