When I run, I do it to stay active and stay healthy, but there are many things I take for granted. For example, the fact that I can breathe easily without any complications.
Until Shaun, I didn't know anyone who struggled with a lung disease. I met him in college, and through our mutual love of music, I got to know him well and learned that he had cystic fibrosis, an inherited and life-threatening lung disease. Doing everyday activities was hard on his body, and as he got older, the symptoms got worse. I remember him telling me that someday he'd like to run a race with me, because he believed he'd get better (and so did I). After a double-lung transplant, it looked like things were going that route.
Over the last few years, as tends to happen in life, we lost touch. We'd say the occasional hello, and say "yeah yeah, we'll meet up sometime soon". But earlier this year he passed away from his fight with CF. My major regret is not making the time to see him more often, and for not understanding just how brutal CF can be.
I am running this race for Shaun, because he never got the opportunity to like he wanted to. I realize this isn't much, but it's something, and I hope it helps people like him even just a little.
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