One of us died this week. Not in runner's jargon . . . as in "tiring in a race" . . . but in real life. Tim Frantz died of a disease that wracked his body for years. We are all stronger from having witnessed his battle with cancer but we are all devastated by his passing too.
As a middle school runner, Tim planned to run for Cherokee . . . with guys like Ted Schickling, Alex Yersak, and Steve McCarroll. But, when they entered the high school in 2004, he was already under treatment for Ewing's Sarcoma, a form of bone cancer. After numerous chemo sessions and operations to stop the spread, Tim couldn't run but he could be part of the team. So, in 2005, he came out for the team as a manager. He worked every meet, struggling on crutches to move around the course, cheering the runners, taking times, keeping the results sheet, and scoring the meet. Everyone could see it wasn't easy but he did it anyway, hoping that some day he would be a runner again.
But that day never came. Over the years, he ran many races against the cruel disease, against the watch as there were no other competitors, against hills much more difficult than Holmdel's bowl, and he won many of them. But this week, on September 22nd, 2008, it was too much for him, and his racing ended.
We'll remember Tim as one of us, a fighter whose courage we admired, and . . . well . . . simply, a great kid!
Rest in peace, Tim.
~ The summer before he died, Tim left a brief reminder of what an extraordinary kid he was on YouTube ~
The annual Richard's Run at Cooper River Park has raised tens of thousands of dollars for the "Go 4 the Goal" organization as they work to fund research for pediatric cancer and help children with cancer and their families. This organization was a big help to Tim's family during his battle with Ewing's Sarcoma and a special award, The Tim Frantz Memorial Medal, is given to the top male and female finishers.
This year, 2017, the 11th Annual Richard's 5K Run will be at Cooper River Park on April 30th, 2017!
Check out their website for all the details on the next race and make a donation at any time in Tim's name at: Go 4 the Goal Foundation!