Marathon runner honors cancer community at Horse Capital Marathon

In total, around 600 runners from 25 states participated in the annual Horse Capitol Marathon at the Kentucky Horse Park. The 26.2 mile race is organized by Race Rise.
Marathon

LEXINGTON, Ky (WTVQ) Running a marathon can be hard for anyone. But runner Stephen Johnson has a little extra motivation to keep himself going.

“These are all cancer survivors and cancer fighters, those that are with us and those that are not with us anymore,” Johnson said.

Johnson’s running outfit included a pair of wings with pictures of people who have or are battling cancer. He runs for Imerman Angels, a non profit that provides support to those in the cancer community.

“They match cancer fighters with cancer survivors,” Johnson said. He also runs for his wife, a 15-year breast cancer survivor. Johnson says she is doing wonderfully.

In total, around 600 runners from 25 states participated in the annual Horse Capitol Marathon at the Kentucky Horse Park. The 26.2 mile race is organized by Race Rise.

“I started this business about seven years ago,’ said RaceRise founder Bob Baney. “And we are busy 45-48 weekends a year, doing races all benefiting different charities. Most of them are local. Everything from horses to healthcare,” Baney said.

The Horse Capital Marathon benefits the Blue Grass Farms Charities, a nonprofit that supports people working in the central Kentucky thoroughbred industry.

“They provide services for those workers, and food drives, and Christmas parties and things of that nature,” Baney said.

Now in it’s 8th year, Baney says the race gets bigger and better.

“It’s just fun to see new faces and see them cross that finish line and get their medal and feel that sense of accomplishment,” Baney said.

It’s an accomplishment for many just to finish the race.

While muscles ache and the sweat pours, and with angels literally on Johnson’s back, crossing the finish line means a little more.

“They are also my support is that when it gets really difficult, I can think about well all of these people on my back, some of them will never be able to run again so they’re no longer with us,” Johnson said.

 

 

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