The Legacy Strongheart Foundation will hold a 5K event at 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 21, at Urbana University to benefit three Champaign County families affected by pediatric cancer.
The event is in honor of Jillian Ripley and Jack Sherrick and in memory of Devon Burke.
In honor of Jillian Ripley
Jillian was first diagnosed with osteosarcoma in 2016, at 11 years of age. Over the course of her cancer journey, she had numerous rounds of chemo, surgeries and long hospital stays. In 2017 she underwent rotationplasty, a type of amputation, because the surgery to remove the cancer and replace what was taken out failed.
She was cancer-free until 2018 when the osteosarcoma formed in her lungs. She again had many surgeries and several rounds of chemo. She was cancer-free for a few months, but was diagnosed in 2019 with osteosarcoma in her lungs again. She has had more rounds of chemo and is waiting to have surgery to remove the cancerous tumors in her lungs.
In honor of Jack Sherrick
Jack Sherrick is a 9-year-old boy with stage four adrenal-cortical carcinoma believed caused by a FAP/APC genetic mutation. He has three younger sisters. His youngest sister, Penelope, shares the same genetic mutation. Jack lives with his mother, sisters and pet dog Loki. Jack loves Pokemon, Minecraft, marvel, and dinosaurs. He has had eight rounds of EDP (the chemotherapy protocol for his cancer.) He will have scans in September to see if he is stable. If he is, his port will be removed and he will stay on an oral chemo drug. If not, other options will be explored. Jack’s cancer is rare. Chances to get it are one in a million.
In memory of Devon Burke
Born March 28, 1998, Devon Burke lived with four younger brothers and his mother, Annie (Epping) Johnson, in North Lewisburg. Three sisterslive with his father in Marysville.
In November 2013, Devon was diagnosed with Ewing sarcoma, a form of bone cancer. He underwent limb salvage surgery and 17 rounds of aggressive chemotherapy and in September 2014 was considered cancer-free. In November 2015, cancer returned. He underwent radiation and chemotherapy for a year and in December 2016 was considered cancer-free.
In August 2017 he was excited to attend Ohio University in Athens for wildlife conservation. Everything was going well until April 2018 when cancer returned. He began more chemo and radiation. During treatment he fulfilled a Make-a-Wish trip to Costa Rica. Chemotherapy seemed to be keeping the cancer under control until fall of 2018 when the cancer became more aggressive. Various treatment options seemed to work briefly.
Devon kept wanting to fight the disease. On June 24 of this year, he lost the battle. No matter what he faced or endured he was always smiling. He never complained even in the toughest most painful of times.
The foundation is seeking sponsorships and race participants for the Sept. 21 event. Businesses can have their logo on the race shirt with a donation of at least $250 or have their business name on the shirt for $100. Families can donate $50 to have their family name printed on the race T-shirt.
The 5K registration fee is $25 and the Fun Run fee is $15.
Sponsorship and registration fees must be submitted by Sept. 5 to guarantee T-shirts. Email TerraGrupe@gmail.com for the sponsorship letter and registration form. Registration also can be made online for the 5K at https://bit.ly/2GtIwIi
Follow the foundation on Facebook at TheLegacyStrongheartFoundation.
The Fun Run is geared toward kids and those unable to run the 5K Run. Those participating will receive a race T-shirt and participation ribbon. Urbana University cheerleaders will be dressed as “Royalty of the Legacy Strongheart Foundation” Disney princesses. Little ones can have photos taken with the “princesses.”
The 5K will present race awards for top finishers in these divisions: Male/Female 10 and under, 11-14, 15-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60 and older.
Online registration and race results will be posted on Can’t Stop Running’s Website: www.cantstoprunningco.com.
Info from the Legacy Strongheart Foundation.