Hello everyone! My name is Leonard Kelley, and I am the father of an incredible lil guy named Liam (3yr old). Liam was born with Williams Syndrome and has had quite the rough road in his 3yrs on this earth. Williams Syndrome is a rare developmental disorder that affects many parts of the body. This condition is characterized by mild to moderate intellectual disability or learning problems, unique personality characteristics, distinctive facial features, and heart and blood vessel (cardiovascular) problems. Liam had open heart surgery at 4 days old, and has since had numerous surgeries and hospitalizations, as well as having a feeding tube "installed". Through all that though, he's been the most amazing lil fighter and continues to amaze his mom and I on a daily basis.
I am no runner.......quite honestly I cannot stand it. I'd much rather be in a gym lifting than doing any sort of cardio workout. However, a botched back surgery in March of 2017 has made lifting an impossibility. I allowed myself to gain about 45lbs of fat and stayed in a depressive state for much of the year after my surgery. I finally decided to quit wallowing away in my own self pity and looked for ways to improve my health. Upon learning of the 2018 in 2018 challenge, I thought "what if I turned my running into a way to raise awareness and funds for Williams Syndrome" and thus we have this campaign. The details are as follows:
1. Myself and 9 other (non runners :) people that have followed Liam's story are going to attempt to run a combined 2018 miles in 2018, culminating in running the Dallas Marathon on December 9th 2018.
2. The goal is to raise at least $2018.00 that will be donated to the Williams Syndrome Association (https://williams-syndrome.org) in a live video before the race, of our lil team writing the check before we run the marathon!
3. You can follow our training progress, thoughts, etc on this campaign page in addition to our group Facebook page fb.me/2018miles4WilliamsSyndrome, that will chronicle everything related to this journey.
So that's pretty much everything. Please consider contributing to this fundraiser that'll not only raise awareness for Williams Syndrome, but also motivate some out-of-shape people to get in shape for a marathon :) Thank you so very much for considering this fundraiser and please do let me know if you have any questions.