Susan Layton

Film Producer - ASL Performer - Life Learner

Tag: hearing aids

I’m Inspired: Justin’s Victory!

Justin20Today was the final victory for Justin Osmond as he reached his goal: To run 250 miles in 7 days.  The prize at the end of the snow, sleet, hail, rain, sunshine, blisters, IT band flare ups and the like was being able to give the “gift of hearing” to 25 kids in Southern Utah through “Run4Hearing“.

When we arrived at the park this morning, it was cold and rainy.  I thought, “This is not that fun”.  But then I thought of Justin and my attitude and thoughts quickly changed to: “This is worth it! This is going to be amazing!”  Running this 5k in the “cold”weather was the least I could do to show support for this amazing cause, the Olive Osmond Hearing Fund‘s “Run4Hearing“.   My family,Justin6 along with a large part of the Southern Utah’s Deaf community, as well as many other supporters were there, all in the best of spirits!  There was a special, positive vibe in the park.

Once we started running, the rains stopped, the very chilly weather warmed up, and the clouds stayed around to keep us comfortable.  After the 5k and the kids run, we waited for the arrival of Justin.  His family came and stood behind the finish line with their ‘250-mile’ banner … and then … THERE – HE- WAS!  Justin came running over the hill with his wife, the Mayor, his running coach and many other close-to-the-cause people.  He ran through the cheering crowd towards the finish line.  As he Justin7crossed the long anticipated finish line, he embraced and wept with his family and the crowd cheered, in sign and with whoops and hollers.  It was sweet to see him victorious! It was a really special thing to witness.

We all followed him over to where he would share a few words of gratitude.  (I was so upset because I thought I was recording and after his sweet and tender intro, I looked up and realized it wasn’t recording! Argh!)  He sobbed, “I kept running, even through the toughest moments those moments that I almost couldn’t go anymore, but I did because I remembered what it was for: the deaf kids! … I kept reminding it will be worth it in the end, because it is for these deaf kids, the true Super Heroes! … So I kept on running!”Justin11Close

He invited his family, sponsors, his running coach and the ‘Super Hear-O’ recipients up and paid gratitude and tribute to each for their contribution and purpose to the cause.  Justin said, “Can you imagine, driving 250 miles going 2-3 miles per hour?? My mom and my dad did just that! Just to support me!”  (I love when people publicly express gratitude to/for their parents!  It’s just so cool!)  I think the moment that stood out most to me was when he invited Marie Osmond, his Aunt, up to the mic to “sing a song”.  Everyone laughed.  No, she didn’t sing.  (Drats! Ha) But she did share this: (“ish” – because it’s from memory. Smile.)

Justin14“My mom’s family was all girls and one boy.  Then she had her own children and it was all boys and one girl.  But what’s special is that her only brother was deaf, and two of her own sons were deaf.  Before she passed on, she expressed the one thing she wanted most of all.  She wanted to leave a legacy of helping the deaf.  My mother asked Justin to carry that legacy on.  Not only has he done just that, but this very day commemorates 11 years since her passing.  Yesterday, I kept thinking of Justin on the home stretch, and I felt my mother poking me from the other side saying, “Marie, get your booty down there!” So I’m here! I really believe my mother was with you on this run and cheering you on along the way! I’m sure she is looking down right now, very proud of you as you continue the legacy she wanted to live on!”

Beautiful!  Better than a song!  But I still would’ve really enjoyed a song too! (Haha)

Justin18

Then Justin lined up for pictures and interviews. Excitement continued to fill the air long after it was “over”.  This event has been the talk of the town, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook for many, as well as for six excited people in my car.  But the cause and Justin’s journey couldn’t be more worthy of it!

Learn more, give some, tweet about, like them, or whatever else: Olive Osmond HearingFund.org and Run4Hearing.com.

I guess my take away from this is: Be Inspired!  Find inspiration.  Be the inspiration.  All of us don’t have an “Aunt Marie” or a “Mother Osmond” … but we don’t have to wait or side-line an opportunity to be inspired or to inspire others.  Just go for it, put your foot forward and race towards your finish line. A world out there is waiting to be inspired!  … Yup, THAT’s what I learned!

Justin8 Justin1   Justin3 Justin4  Justin16Justin5

Question: Who has inspired you and how? Share your thoughts in the comments section below or on my Facebook page.  

Photos Courtesy of: @SpectrumJenkins, @DJBolerjack, @TasminMahFuz, @MeadowSigns and @HiyaSusieQ

JUST IN: JUSTIN’s RUNspiration and ME

Who got to run with Justin Osmond?  ME!
Run - Justin Osmond 1

 Yeah, my story went like this:  Drop off the little guy to preschool.  Come home.  Slump in my chair.  Sigh, “I wish I had something cool to do”.  Got on Facebook (isn’t that where we all go for excitement? Ha).  First post on my feed: “Justin Osmond is “here””.  I thought, “Oh, a run with Justin would be cool! 250 miles is a long way! It’d be fun to keep him company for a couple of those miles.”  So I hurried and changed my clothes and set off to search for Justin and his crew.  By the way, he’s a running beast!  I kept searching in the area I “thought” he’d be.  He was MUCH farther down the way than I expected.  But I found him and parked a half a mile up the road.  I ran back to where they were and started my run with him.

(You might be wondering, why is Justin running a crazy 250 miles?  The cause is awesome: It’s called Run4Hearing – raising funds so deaf kids can have access to hearing aids, FM systems, etc.  Check out his website!)

Run - Justin Osmond 2On my run, I learned first hand that Justin is a genuine guy with a heart of gold!  This fundraiser is really important to him – these deaf kids are really important to him!  He said that one day, he thought, “I want to make a difference  for deaf kids”, so he came up with a plan.  And because he loves to run he wanted to incorporate running into the fundraising idea. He asked me, “When you found out about my idea to run 250 miles, did you think I was crazy?”  I said, “No, I didn’t think you were crazy at all! I just thought it was WAY COOL!”  He said that the other day, near the beginning of this fundraising run, he was running through the freezing cold, sleet and rain. The only thing that kept him going was thinking about these deaf kids who will benefit from this run.  Hearing aids, FM systems, and assistive listening devices are expensive. Justin wants to help make sure deaf kids have what they need. This run will make a difference!

Talking with Justin made the run easy.   I left inspired!

It was interesting, this morning I was listening to a podcast by the amazing Michael Hyatt about how to get things done, even when others tell you that you’re crazy or the idea is too ambitious.  One thing that just kept repeating in my head was the idea to THINK BIG and don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t.  Have a plan and just take it by the horns and do it.  Justin was a PRIME example of this.

I got the pleasure of running with Justin for 2 miles.  (I had to turn around and run back to my car cuz it was time to get my little guy.) My run with him was short but it was worth the crazy notion to change my clothes and scout him out.  It was an inspiring run!  And dang it, it was just fun – and the weather was absolutely perfect!  It really was awesome!Run - Justin Osmond 3

Good luck Justin!  I hope all your dreams and the dreams of many deaf kids come true!  My family is looking forward to running at the Super Hear-O 5k on Saturday in support of this tremendous cause!

Check out and support Justin’s 250-mile Run Fundraiser for Deaf Kids: Facebook.com/Run4HearingRun4Hearing.com and the Olive Osmond Hearing Fund 

 

 

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