When Julie and Christie Laethem began planning their sisterís trip for early 2014, they found that agreeing on a destination proved to be much harder than expected.† As Julie pushed for London or Ireland and Christie kept a relaxing vacation to the beach in mind, an exciting opportunity with Team Fox soon found them both setting their sights on a trip with a much more personal meaning. ††
When Christie first opened Julieís email about running the Miami Marathon & Half Marathon for Team Fox, she thought Julie was nuts!† But as the sisters talked it over, they realized that not only would it make a great vacation Ė allowing them to escape snowy Michigan Ė but it was also the perfect opportunity to run and fundraise in support of their dad Jim, who lives with Parkinson's disease. And so began Team Laethemís journey to Miami.
Jim Laethem was diagnosed with Parkinsonís about 9 years ago, and quickly his family wanted to get all the information they could.† They read up on neurologists and support groups in the area, and quickly got involved with the Michigan Parkinsonís Foundation.† They also started following the work of The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, finding inspiration along the way.† Julie notes that sheís ďhonored to be raising awareness and money that will help find a cure for Parkinsonís.† Iím proud to be wearing the Team Fox jersey, and to be a part of the team that gives me the optimism that there will be a cure in my lifetime.Ē
While both sisters are new to running, they have found encouragement and excitement through running with Team Fox, and are excited to have both parents cheering them on to the finish line in Miami! For both Julie and Christie, this race will not only be about achieving person goals and enjoying some sunshine, but also about making an impact for their dad and the entire Parkinsonís community.
The Miami Marathon & Half Marathon is scheduled for Sunday, February 2nd.† Best of luck to Julie, Christie and the entire Team Fox running team!