Today 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, 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 crossed 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!”
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.)
“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)
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!
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!
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