Local cancer patient Brian Smith will line up with 52,000 athletes from around the world Sunday, Nov. 3, to part take in the New York City Marathon.
Smith, a Bremerton resident, will be part of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation’s Team for Cures with a goal of surpassing $300,000 for cancer research. Multiple myeloma is currently an incurable blood cancer and is the second-most common blood cancer after non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Smith was diagnosed with multiple myeloma just over three-and-a-half years ago after a vertebra collapsed in his neck. At the time of his diagnosis, Smith and his wife had a two-year-old daughter and a newborn son.
“My wife and I faced the real prospect of her having to raise our kids on her own,” Smith said. “The uncertainty around that left me feeling pretty helpless initially.”
Smith will be racing in honor of all patients fighting this disease.
“As someone with a young family, my goal is to be able to live long enough for my children to remember me,” he said. “Being a member of the MMRF Team for Cures at this Ironman event allows me to take some direct action in helping fund the research needed for that goal to become a reality.”
The challenging 26.2-mile race draws more than 100,000 applicants for 50,000 spots. The running tour of the five boroughs of New York City begins with a breathtaking run over Verrazano Bridge, which connects Staten Island and Brooklyn, and finishes at the famous finish line in Central Park.
The MMRF team will have more than 65 athletes racing.
“We have found ways to get the impossible done with events like the NYC Marathon,” said Jane Hoffmann, associate director of endurance events for the MMRF.
“The success of these events is directly correlated to the passion of each athlete who not only takes on the challenge of these strenuous races but makes a difference in the lives of patients with multiple myeloma.”
“These caring individuals reach out to their friends, coworkers and family members, who in turn contribute whatever amount they can,” Hoffmann added. “Everyone walks away from these events inspired and rewarded knowing they’ve positively impacted the lives of patients.”
In 2019, the MMRF Endurance Events Program hopes to raise more than $3 million with 850 athletes, bringing the program’s total fundraising to more than $23 million. To support Smith, visit endurance.themmrf.org/2019NYC/BrianSmith.