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How Many Marathons Make You LampStrong?

Last year was a quiet one for the LampStrong Foundation. We all know why.

Hospital visit regulations made it so that Matt could not carry out his traditional supportive hospital visits. Fans could not attend games obviating the fact that the Hero Program had to be modified into a temporary virtual format.

Regardless, in its own quiet way, the LampStrong Foundation was not totally dormant. In conjunction with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles’ Teen and Family Support Services, Matt was able to participate in a Soccer and Trivia Hour. This virtual program’s focus was to help teen cancer patients cope with the unique stressors of illness made more difficult by the social isolation resulting from the COVID pandemic. Despite an abbreviated MLS schedule, the Foundation still honored several LampStrong Heroes, albeit in a virtual fashion. Equally satisfying was the Foundation’s $25,000.00 grant to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles’ Teen and Family Support Services.

As noted, despite the pandemic, the LampStrong Foundation continues to strive to fulfill its mission of providing difference making financial, emotional, and motivational support of cancer patients and their families experiencing all stages of cancer treatment and recovery. This can only be accomplished because of the unselfish support of behind-the-scenes individuals that are incredibly special. Of note is one Peter Krzywosz.

As challenging as Peter’s name is to spell, read and pronounce, his heart embraces emotional challenges that far surpass this fact. In the age of the 2020 COVID pandemic Peter ran 7 marathons in 7 days. He did it in September. One must not be mistaken that Peter just runs around the streets of Chicago ala Forrest Gump. He strives to celebrate his fitness and good health for a purpose. Helping pediatric cancer patients seems to be that purpose. Here is where another LampStrong Foundation angel enters the picture. Her name is Carina Vallejos.

Carina, whose heart is as big as Peter’s, was the catalyst that linked him up to the LampStrong Foundation. Peter wanted to do a charity run. September was Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month. Carina gently directed him towards the blended goal of raising funds in the name of Matt Lampson’s Foundation. A Go Fund Me initiative was born.

The idea of the Olympic marathon race was inspired by the legend of an ancient Greek messenger who raced from the site of Marathon to the city of Athens with the news of an important Greek victory over an invading army of Persians. The distance was 40 kilometers (25 miles). In the 1908 London Olympics, queen Alexandra wanted her little royals to witness the start of the race. To accommodate this, the race had to start on the lawn of Windsor Castle (the little tykes had to be indulged). Given that it was to end in front of the Royal Box at Olympic Stadium, 1.2 miles were added to the length of the race. From that time on the Olympic marathon is run for 26 miles and 385 yards.

Peter ran 7 marathons in 7 days through the city of Chicago. That means that he ran 183.4 miles in one week. This is a remarkable achievement. This is especially true after one notes that the Greek legend has it that the messenger that ran from Marathon to Athens dropped dead after delivering his message. As far as we know, Peter is still running around downtown Chicago.

One might surmise that Peter Krzywosz’s 7 marathons in 7 days was a lonely achievement, but it was not. He had 163 invisible LampStrong angels supporting him. Together they raised over $11,696.00 for the Foundation. These are the folks that make Matt’s vision possible.

Sincerest thanks to Peter for his amazing dedication to the LampStrong Foundation and it's mission.


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