At it again in 2017!
Linnea and her family staffed the annual Little a Triathlon Lemonade stand. For two days (in not the best weather, to boot!), she was out there selling lemonade and homemade baked goods and raising money for Natilynn. We all feel so lucky in live in such a caring community!
Our 2020 recipient is Nic Nelson.
You can follow Nic's treatment and progress here: www.facebook.com/groups/nicstrong
From Nic's mom:
Nicholas Nelson was diagnosed with Ewings Sarcoma, a rare bone cancer, the last week of his 6th grade year. Battling nerve pain all spring while training for his chosen sport of triathlon, we got an MRI ordered when other therapies were not making progress. Specialists in Anchorage confirmed that it was not treatable within Alaska and referred us out of state. We chose to go to Johns Hopkins. Within a week, Nicholas was checked into Johns Hopkins, had biopsies of the tumor and bone marrow, a port placement and another several hours worth of scans (MRIs and PET scans). The scans confirmed the diagnosis and also that it had metastasized to three other areas. This did not change the protocol, just the ability to be able to remove anything with surgery. The initial protocol consists 14 rounds of chemo, every other week when on track, however sometimes his body does not recover enough and there have been several delays. This fall, Nic completed 33 daily (weekday) radiation, pinpointed at the main tumor site. He will also receive additional radiation therapy to the secondary tumor site. Initial follow up scans in August were promising in reduction of the main tumor site. He will continue to have periodic scans to assess the progress. We are currently in discussion about next steps to provide Nic the best scenario possible to avert a reoccurrence which is very high in this prognosis as well as all childhood cancers. These treatments will span over a few months after the initial treatments, which should end in January 2020.
Nic is amazingly strong and with a great attitude. I have such an appreciation for all of those who are helping us with our journey in Anchorage, here in Maryland and throughout the country. We are all looking forward to him getting back home and back training for triathlons himself.
I do maintain two online sites for communication: caring bridge and a #nicSTRONG facebook page. We all really appreciate your support, prayers, encouragement and understanding through this process. Nic loves getting messages, either text or written. Our address here is
6887 Garland Lane; Columbia, MD 20145; my personal email is: email@example.com
A very touching Alaska Dispatch News piece by Charles Wohlforth and Eric Hill.
A short article printed in an Anchorage School District newsletter.
KTUU piece on Avery and the race here.
If you are going to listen to a single piece on the event, please listen to Annie Feidt's APRN piece; it simply nailed what we are doing with this event.
After the hair cut for wigs with a note for Avery =======>
Casey Kopkash is a middle-schooler from Lawrenceville, N.J. She got her friends to help raise money for us by holding a triathlon of her own! She is familiar with Avery's story and when she heard about Maddy and our triathlon, she wanted to help but could not talk her parents into a plane ticket to Alaska. So, she decided to take to create a fund-raising event of her own.
A 10 year old is simply showing us all how to live a full and giving life. She donated her hair and raisied money for cancer research and treatment. Half of her earnings went to the Canadian Cancer Society; meanwhile, she donated the other half of her earnings to the little a triathlon. Her words and her efforts will leave you speechless.
If you or someone you know wishes to volunteer for the event, please contact J.T. Lindholm at firstname.lastname@example.org
This triathlon is both a fundraising event and a memorial for Avery Lindholm. She was a fun-loving, smart, and energetic child who was diagnosed with medulloblastoma type 3 (an aggressive form of brain cancer) at the age of 2 ½ . She passed away 5 ½ months later, just days shy of her third birthday. Even in her short life, she was always drawn to people and it only seems fitting that an event that gives back to others to make their lives better be done in her name. Her mom, Adrienne, came to be known as "Big A" while Avery was always referred to as "little a." To learn more about the girl known as “little a” feel free to read her obituary or see a slideshow that was played at her memorial service (links to them are below). Of course, her dad, J.T., will talk about her with anyone who asks.
Avery's obituary can also be found here: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/adn/obituary.aspx?pid=175903041
Avery's Slideshow from her memorial can also be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8pAkTMVdiQ
<========= These four (Linnea, Kylar, Kael and Maya) spent an entire day near the South Fork Trailhead and raised over $200 for the Brandl's! They also raised awareness about our event and really demonstrated what we are hoping to do: build community. I am humbled by their efforts and so excited to have them on our team of volunteers!
For the race in 2018, there have already been many generous donations to the race to to Avery's spirit. Artist Tony Perelli has created a gorgeous wooden bench in Avery's honor. He received permission to place it in Spirit Park in Eagle River, a park that Avery visited often. You can read more about the bench and the artist here: tonyperelli.com
Scott and Becky Hauser have also donated a chair from the old Chair One at Alyeska. The chair will be auctioned off and all the proceeds will go towards Jazee's medical care.
And as if one day of fundraising wasn't enough!
Maya headed out for a second consecutive day of fundraising at Pioneer Days in Palmer. She brought with her photos of Maddy, a poster about the triathlon and a spirit that is enviable by all. I just love it that kids are our greatest fundraisers for this event.
There will be prizes (57 total) for the finishers winning the categories below. The top three males, females and teams as well as first place in the age group categories below will receive prizes or medals. Our awards range from gifts from our sponsors to pieces of functional art. Our medals are designed and created by master potters Jacob Bera and Tony Perelli and are truly conversation pieces.
Top Three Overall Male and Female
Top Three Overall Teams
Top males and females in each age group