By Maria Papandreou, One Summit Senior Manager of Development & Communications
Marathons and life mirror each other in specific ways. Both can sometimes be difficult, challenging, and present obstacles. It's how you mentally approach these times both in the marathon and in life that determines results. Believing in your dreams and having a never-give-up mindset go a long way in helping things turn out positively.
We are honored that John Hancock selected One Summit as one of its Non-Profit Marathon Program Partners for the sixth year in a row. One Summit's 2022 team is once again diverse, but they all share their commitment to our community of like-minded warriors. Read on to find out more about this fantastic group of runners who are ready to compete and complete the 126th Boston Marathon on April 18th, 2022.
Heather Dwyer, One Summit Little Warrior Parent
I am running the Boston Marathon for a cause that has had a lasting impact on our family - One Summit. We were introduced to this amazing organization that aims to build resilience in kids battling cancer through 1:1 mentorship with a Navy SEAL, storytelling, and community engagement. Our daughter, Maggie, was diagnosed with ALL/Leukemia in October 2019. Maggie and her sister Kate were partnered with a Navy Seal and participated in the "Climb for Courage" in the fall of 2021. The day of indoor rock climbing and team building has had a lasting impact on their lives. The partnership between my girls and the Navy Seal they were partnered up with has formed a special and unique bond. Running 26.2 miles is an insignificant challenge compared to Maggie's fight against cancer. This experience was life changing for Maggie and I would love to help other pediatric cancer patients and their families have this opportunity. We are incredibly grateful she has completed her treatment, but this is not the case for so many other pediatric cancer patients. Organizations like One Summit make children feel empowered and supported in this fight to help moderate pediatric cancer's overwhelming, frightening, and unthinkable burden.
Conner, One Summit Mentor
I have had the honor of volunteering as a mentor at multiple Climb for Courage events over the years. The Climb for Courage Program's impact on the kids' lives and the mentor SEALs is profound. I'm taking part in 126th Boston Marathon to raise money for One Summit because I genuinely believe in the excellent work they do for warriors big and small. Their mission is very close to my heart.
Jacob, Navy SEAL
One Summit is an organization that means a lot to me, and it’s an honor running as part of their 2022 Boston Marathon Team. Childhood cancer is devastating, not only to the children receiving treatment but to their families/siblings. Being present for these young people through my previous and future involvement with One Summit is life-changing. I have never pushed myself to run an entire marathon race, and it has always been a personal goal. Achieving this in association with One Summit undoubtedly provides me with the mental determination and motivation to cross the finish line. I cannot think of a more worthy charitable cause.
One Summit allows pediatric cancer patients to feel that they are kids again while battling cancer by inviting them to rock climb with a great group of people. Two years ago, I was able to participate in a Climb for Courage and was matched with a remarkable young child who was the brother of a boy battling cancer. I am still in touch with him and love seeing him and his family’s progress since the Climb. Childhood cancer impacts all family members, not just the child with the diagnosis. One Summit provides support to the child battling such an unfair disease as well as the siblings and parents. The entire family builds resilience together!
Ryan Shows, US Navy Lieutenant
I have not yet had the opportunity to mentor with One Summit. However, I have had a few people in my previous platoon and multiple friends who have participated as a mentor in Climb for Courage, and they spoke extremely highly of it. It made me want to get involved and running as part of their Marathon Team this year has afforded me that chance. My younger cousin Amanda beat her battle with Leukemia years ago, which motivates me when I run. Helping the patients, siblings, and families in the One Summit community is something I’m proud to be fundraising and running for.
Ashley Branham, One Summit Supporter
I'm thrilled to participate in 126th Boston Marathon to raise money for One Summit! I became involved with One Summit through a family member who has served as a mentor. Running the Boston Marathon has been a huge dream of mine for a very long time. Joining Team One Summit has allowed me to run with a purpose more significant than personal achievement. Running to support young children battling far more complex challenges than I have ever experienced in life gives me an entirely different outlook on my own life. I am grateful for the opportunity to be able to run. The chance to run with Team One Summit and fundraise for its mission is gratifying.
Nick Heath, One Summit Young Professional Board Member
I am currently a member of the Young Professional Board of the Boston Chapter for One Summit. I am both professionally and personally passionate about supporting cancer research and programming, especially when it affects children who experience this during such formative years. One Summit's mission of building resilience in young 'warriors' inspires me in many ways. Running the 126th Boston Marathon to raise awareness for One Summit and the families they service is a way for me to push my physical and mental ability to build personal resilience to giving up. The children impacted by cancer, the Navy SEALs who serve as mentors, and the families who provide care for their little warriors will inspire me to put one foot in front of the other on April 18th. I will cross the finish line on Boylston Street in hopes that it will provide an opportunity for children battling cancer to win their fight!