By Randy Pierce
In 2006, I was so proud to step out of my wheelchair for the final time and walk, albeit slowly, with a support (hiking!) stick. Quinn came along a bit later and soon had me walking better and better each and every day. He then helped guide me back to running and amidst our many achievements together we ran roughly 30 road races together. It was a precious gift and we were pioneers of the Guide Dog running potential here in New England. We loved running together as the marvelous photo from the BAA 5k shows while highlighting the potent image of the flags display at the Boston marathon finish in 2013. I knew then I would do everything possible to run the full Boston marathon.
When Quinn became afflicted with bone cancer in the Fall of 2013 and tragically bid us a final farewell in January of 2014, I made the right and reasonable choice to delay my running. Starting April 6 with my first half marathon until I qualify for and then run the Boston Marathon 2015, I am going to dedicate and log all of my many miles in Quinn’s Honor (#miles4Quinn). I am hoping and encouraging any and all of you to consider joining me in your favorite format to honor Quinn and simultaneously support our 2020 Vision Quest charity. Whether you walk, bicycle, hike, swim, ski or do other healthy ways of travelling, please consider this as a means to increase your health and join our cause! We will track all the many miles we all travel on our journey to healthy fun and the most marvelous Mighty Quinn! As our community grows we may attract a sponsor or two as well. Like most charities we strive to earn funds to support our mission.
It’s as easy as this three-step approach and we’ll be leading the way early and often:
I’m running the Great Bay Half Marathon in Newmarket, NH on April 6, the Boston Athletic Association 5k on April 19 and my first marathon on May 3 at which I hope to qualify for Boston 2015. The California International Marathon and of course Boston are major races in our plans, along with many local races and the near constant training. We’d love to run, walk, bike, and hike with our entire community as often as possible and hope to promote all of our health and happiness. I’m running with human guidance for these races while Autumn comes up to speed on our Guide work together.
On June 7, I hope she’ll lead our best team yet on the NHAB 3k Walk for Sight in Concord NH I won’t know how well we’ll succeed on any of our various goals but I know how hard I’m prepared to work. I hope you’ll all consider celebrating with me each and every mile we can dedicate to my inspiration, motivation and so very loved Mighty Quinn. Along the way I hope we help encourage each other and continue to support the organization built largely upon the wagging tail of Guiding Eyes Quinn!