Endurance Events Program PowerTeam Member Bank of America Chicago Marathon
Posted: April, 2012
Jeff Goad was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in May 2010. The discovery was made as a result of a softball injury. After a year of chemo and two stem cell transplants, he feels blessed to be living a normal life and wants to inspire others to power through and thrive. Jeff recently received the good news that his myeloma level had dropped to single digits!
Jeff could barely walk around the block his first day home from his second stem cell transplant in March 2011. Since then, Jeff and his wife Ramona have conquered the Grand Canyon with a hike down and out of its south rim at 9.5 miles each way, braving a 5,000 foot change in elevation and 100 degree temperatures. Jeff’s next big challenge was the October 2011 Bank of America Chicago Marathon with the MMRF PowerTeam. This was his 10th marathon, but his very first after the myeloma diagnosis and treatment. Despite battling an IT band injury with his knee and coming in a full 90 minutes slower than his usual time, he describes the event as the most satisfying and emotional experience of his running career. “I had so many amazing memories and milestones and got to experience the joy and accomplishment of each moment as if it were my first time,” Jeff said. “It was humbling to witness firsthand the dedication and focus on raising funds for loved ones, knowing that the funds raised would directly benefit me.” His brother, Brad, joined him alongside other patients’ family members on the MMRF team.
The evening before the marathon, Jeff and Ramona attended an MMRF reception with other members of the Chicago PowerTeam. Jeff was asked to share his personal story with the crowd and spoke about his 17-month journey with multiple myeloma and his motivation to run the Chicago race to raise money for the MMRF. In an emotional speech that was the highlight of the reception, Jeff thanked both Ramona and his brother, David. David Goad first began raising funds for the MMRF via the Run Your Own Race Program, participating in the California International Marathon five months after Jeff was diagnosed. David writes a monthly blog that he turned into a book. “Getting to the Point” includes a description of David’s own experience running the marathon, and is available via the MMRF Online Store, with all proceeds to benefit the MMRF.
Jeff, David and Brad Goad will all be running the Chicago event together this year. “I am more motivated than ever to play an active part in helping find a cure,” said Jeff. “The possibilities are endless with great medical care, amazing family and friends, and the power of prayer and good karma from so many.”
The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is on October 7, 2012 – one of the MMRF’s biggest marathon team events which includes a reception and cheer zone.