Johnny Runner, AKA John Maack, was diagnosed with stage 3 lymphoma half a year after completing the Wasatch 100. If you google his race results there is an impressively long list of completed ultras including half a dozen 100's and many more 50 milers. Wow. After hearing the news his diagnosis, the running community (largely Troy Olson and Troy Robertson) in Utah rallied and put on the Corner Canyon 50K in 2012 to show support to John and his family.
|John, Troy and Troy|
Since the diagnosis in April of last year John has underwent numerous rounds of difficult chemo and a stem cell transplant. He is currently running, looking healthy, and his cancer is in remission! John's daughter Dom is the significant other of our good friend and ski partner Tom Goth. A month ago they approached Amanda and I and asked if they could dedicate this year's Corner Canyon 50K to her. We were honored to be part of the tradition that the running community started last year to support one of their own.
Last Saturday 100 or so runners gathered in the Andy Ballard Equestrian Park to honor John and to support Amanda. John gave a heart warming speech about Amanda and her positive attitude during her recent battle with colon cancer. I'm glad no one was looking at me; I may have gotten a little chocked up because I couldn't have agreed more with the kind words he spoke. Amanda then joked that since John already cried a little she wouldn't have to. She thanked us all, told us to enjoy our health, and to savor the opportunity we had to run in such a beautiful canyon.
The next thing we knew, someone yelled go and we were off running. The morning was cool, breezy and perfect. The first 90 mins or so were spent chatting and enjoying the amazing single track throughout Corner Canyon.
|About to start|
|Mile 19, starting to cramp|
|Matt with the win. "You (me) kind of remind me of Richard Simmons in that picture." -Amanda|
Thanks to everyone who participated. The race organizers spent many hours wonderfully marking 31 miles of winding trails, thank you. John Maack, thank you for reaching out to Amanda, beating cancer, and for raising such a great daughter. Next year the Corner Canyon 50K will benefit another battling cancer and we will absolutely be there. Hopefully Amanda will be running, she's planning on it!
|John and Amanda|