An Ohio dad runs his first marathon around hospital for 4-year-old son with cancer
Via Kelsie Smith, CNN
There were two thoughts pushing Kolt Codner forward in his first marathon race: his 4-year-old son Andrew's fight against cancer and the hospital that provides him care.Codner, of Poland, Ohio, ran 26.2 miles around Akron Children's Hospital on October 17 to raise money for the hospital treating his son, who has 26 months left in his treatment.In early May, Codner and his wife Tristan received a phone call that Andrew had a bed waiting for him in the hematology and oncology unit of the hospital.A day that began as a visit to the pediatrician for Andrew's swollen face had resulted in a diagnosis of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a common childhood cancer.
On the day of the race, Codner wrote Andrew's name on the top of his running shoes to keep him motivated. Friends and family were stationed outside the hospital to cheer him on, in a course that took 5 hours and 35 laps to complete. His son was even able to run with him across the finish line and award him a medal.
'To see him running and doing that last lap with me was just incredible,' Codner said.
By the end of the run, Codner had raised 10 times more than his initial goal of $1,000, according to a hospital press release. The fund has reached over $13,000 in donations and has expanded its window until November 30.
Dr. Megan Sampson, a pediatric oncologist who has treated Andrew at the hospital, praises the Codner family.
'It just amazed me that during this scary time that he was thinking about doing this,' said Sampson, referring to Codner's run and the attention he has drawn to the hospital's work.