The MS Run the US – Relay is an annual 3,100-mile relay run across America for the multiple sclerosis (MS) cause. The Relay begins each year mid-April near Los Angeles, CA and finishes mid-August in New York, NY.
To participate each runner commits to a fundraising goal and to running approximately 160-miles over 6 consecutive days during his or her assigned Relay segment. Once selected each runner spends months training and fundraising prior to the event as they prepare to devote one week on the road with the nonprofit while completing their segment’s miles.
Those living daily with MS face many fears: the fear of the unknown, the fear of pain, the fear of just giving up. What better way for us, as a team, to bring awareness to this disease then to face some of the fears ourselves? That is why we have chosen to run 158 miles from Holdrege, NE to Lincoln, NE over six days.
UPDATE: MAY 2017
Unfortunately Jamie has an injury and will not be able to run the relay segment. Joan will be taking on the 158 mile segment on her own. If you are interested in joining Joan for a day or a few miles please let her know. She would love to have some company as she runs across the farm country of Nebraska!
Joan: Why Am I Doing This
My desire to participate in the relay stems from having several close family members who have been diagnosed with MS. My sister is my number one inspiration. A mother of eight, she has dealt with the symptoms of the disease progressively impacting her life since her early 30s. She works hard every single day to overcome the difficulties this disease throws her way. I also have three cousins and an uncle who have been diagnosed with MS. It has changed their lives and the lives of our entire family. I run for my sister, my uncle, my cousins and every single other individual and family affected by the disease including those who have not yet been diagnosed.
I am mom to a wonderful adult daughter, Bree, and wife to the kindest man I know, Mark. I am fortunate to have their unrelenting support and encouragement. After supporting the relay in various ways over the years, I am beyond excited for the opportunity to run segment 10 with my amazing friend Jamie!
Jamie: Why Am I Doing This
Four years ago I was lucky enough to run into Ashley as the MS Run the US Relay made its way through the Midwest. At that time, I wasn't very familiar with the relay or the disease process of Multiple Sclerosis. There was just something about Ashley's spirit that made me gravitate towards her. In 2014, I was lucky enough to spend a couple days out on the road with the segment 11 relay runner. This also allowed me to get to learn more about Ashley's personal story and her mission for the MS Run the US nonprofit. Although I had only been running for a little over a year I knew there was a reason Ashley was put in my path. I applied for and was accepted as part of the 2015 MS Run the US Relay team. It was only then that I started to realize how many people I interact with every day that are affected by MS. People whom I had ran countless miles next to, co-workers whom I had worked side by side for years, and close friends that I had spent countless hours talking with. It really made me start to wonder why MS, unlike other diseases, had such a stigma that people didn't feel comfortable talking about it. Also, as a nurse, it made me curious how I could better care for my patients with MS.
I met so many incredible people living with MS during my time on the 2015 relay team. I knew when the relay officially ended in NYC that I wasn't done raising awareness or funds to cure MS. I am excited to be back for a second year and even more excited to be returning to my home state of Nebraska and running segment 10 with my good friend, Joan.
What Can You Do To Help?
You don't have to have extraordinary abilities to do extraordinary things! We are hoping that each and every person that visits out team page will become part of our journey. We have all heard the saying "It takes a village...” We realize how important it is to have our whole tribe alongside us for this incredible experience. Send us positive thoughts and encouragement, pray for us, or join us out on the road for some miles or simply a high five as you see us run by! Most importantly, you can help by sharing our story and the mission of the nonprofit with family, friends, co-workers, your church congregation and anyone willing to listen. The more we get the word out about what we are doing the more awareness we can bring to MS and to ultimately finding a cure!!! Also, if you have any great ideas for fundraising or have contacts in the Holdrege, Hastings, Crete, Friend, Lincoln or surrounding areas in Nebraska, please share. The #orangearmy can always use an extra hand!!
Many thanks for your support -- and don't forget to forward this to anyone who you think might want to donate too!