From the moment he was born, Runner’s dad Mike couldn’t wait to throw him in a jogging stroller. When Runner was young, running together was a way for Mike to share something he loved with his son. When Runner’s health took a turn and he became immobile, running took on a whole new meaning. Running with dad allowed him to see things he couldn’t normally see and was also therapeutic due to the sensory aspect (movement, wind, etc.). Mike says he loves spending time and talking to Runner during their runs together and just being by themselves.
Wish child Runner has proven time after time to be a super hero! He endured more in his 9 years of life than most adults have to in a lifetime.
Runner was diagnosed with Peridoxine Dependent Epilepsy at 2 years old. It is a rare genetic seizure disorder brought on by the bodies deficiency of vitamin B6. Prior to being diagnosed he began to have seizures at 8 months old. They continued to manifest themselves into more prominent and severe seizures until just before his 1st birthday when the true power of the disorder reared its ugly head.
November 2014, Runner was admitted into Children’s hospital due to vomiting and breathing issues. Runner’s parents' worst nightmare became real. They were told of a new diagnosis for their Superman. Runner was diagnosed with terminal Liver Cancer.
When the family was granted a wish for Runner they decided that they would travel to Florida so that Runner and his dad could participate in the Disney Marathon. Unfortunately, due to health concerns, Runner's doctors advised traveling to Florida. Make-A-Wish reached out the St. Louis running community and found help from the St. Louis Track Club and Fleet Feet.
Runner's dad, Mike, ran in the Frostbite Series 20K on Saturday, January 10th while pushing Runner in a jogging stroller. Other runners in the race showed their support by wearing green for liver cancer awareness and spectators lined the streets with signs, cowbells and cheers of support. Mike and Runner crossed the finish line 14th and 15th to a huge, cheering crowd.
After the race, Runner was full of life and joy and Mike was grateful for being able to share this experience with family, friends and members of the St. Louis running community, a community that he belongs to.