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Thinking of You...

Posted May 06 2013 6:00am
Last Wednesday, I decided to take my son outside to get the mail. We opened the front door, and a white envelope fell to the ground. I picked it up and realized that someone had stuffed a card in the space between the storm door and the main door to the house. There was obviously a card inside, and it was beefy. Carter and I walked to the kitchen where I sat him down and opened the envelope. Inside was a card, on the outside it read "Thinking of you."
Upon opening the envelope, it didn't hit me at first by what was stuffed inside. I read the inside which simply said "naked." .... "Thinking of you.. naked?" I thought.. but then I turned to the pile of 20s. I fanned the money out and was shocked to see that it was all twenties. Four-hundred dollars worth.



There was nothing written on the envelope. No signature on the inside. A 100% anonymous gesture from a friend, or stranger... someone. The only clues would be the card, someone obviously knows my sense of humor, and a small smudge of dirt that lightly graces the back of the envelope where one used their finger to seal it after licking. Sarah and I have our suspects, but we cannot be sure who exactly would do such a thing. We don't want to thank the wrong person, we don't want to give the wrong person credit for such a selfless act. So, I'll quietly thank two friends of mine, who I suspect know who it is, and ask them to thank them for us.

Someone obviously knows the situation we're in. I've been out of work for 4 months now. More if you count the limited hours I worked from October - January. I am unable to collect unemployment due to Colorado Unemployment laws. I try not to share too much. Only local friends who follow me on Facebook know where my head is at and just how much $400 would lift our spirits, give me hope, and help us out. Whoever was thinking of us...   we've been thinking about you for days now... THANK YOU.

It's funny though. The first thing I thought when I counted the money was, "This must be a donation for Vermont Adaptive via my Vermont 100 fundraiser." When I realized it was 100% anonymous, and after calling my wife, I thought... "Well maybe I'll just give $100 of this to Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sport."  Someone in my life, thinks enough of my family, to drop $400 at my front door, and I'm thinking of ways to give it over to charity. The person who gave us this $400 knows us well, if they had signed their name, we would have turned around and given the money right back.

But then my thoughts turn to a few other "anonymous" folks who struck a nerve just a few weeks ago. It was brought to my attention that a few folks here in Colorado think that I'm raising money to fund my trip to Vermont, and to fund my entrance fee into the Vermont 100. This is what they expressed to a friend of mine, when he asked them if they were going to run Niwot's Challenge last month. They told him "no" because I was "putting on the event to pay my way to Vermont."

Now, of course, these folks have never met me. And if they had taken their head out of their backsides long enough to do a little more research, they'll see that I paid for the Vermont 100 back in December (when I was still working), and all monies from events I've put on are paid, online, directly to the charity via the following link:  https://www.pledgereg.com/38870

I know of another individual here in the Front Range who is putting on events, charging exorbitant fees, and taking the profit to pay for their air fare, entry fee, and all other expenses for his desire to run ultras. I'm not like him. This past winter, I put on a Fat Ass ultra series. This series included five events, which I personally organized, and held for FREE. At each event I supplied runners with water and snacks. I allowed some to sleep in my home. Set up car pools. Went out and marked routes with ribbon.. and never asked for a dime in return.

In April, I put on the first annual Niwot's Challenge. I bought books to place in the woods for runners to retrieve pages out of. I supplied runners with sufficient aid during the race. The amount of time and energy I put into the preparation of that event.. as well as staying up for 25 hours in support of the one runner who made it through the course.. All I asked for in return from the runners... was for them to make a minimum of $10 donation to Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sport. DIRECTLY TO VASS... via this link:  https://www.pledgereg.com/38870

This month, I've organized a Grand Canyon Rim 2 Rim 2 Rim Adventure and am welcoming 14 other runners on the adventure. I've organized this event from beginning to end. I've arranged the carpool-caravan, reserved campsites, am providing pre and post run food, and crafted an 8 page run packet for participants so they know exactly what to expect. I'll have spent around $200 for this adventure, and what have I asked participants to do in return? I asked for them to make a minimum of $15 donation to Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sport. DIRECTLY TO VASS... via this link:  https://www.pledgereg.com/38870

Look, I'm no hero. The real hero here is the person who left $400 at my door. That person obviously knows what I've been through, what I'm going through, and the sacrifices I've made these last few months. Sacrifices to myself, my family.. and for others. I've run the Vermont 100 four times previously. Each of those four times, I had never taken the time to raise extra funds for the races charity. So this year, I wanted to return home, run a best time.. and help the charity. The only way I knew how to raise money, was to put on some events and offer unique experiences for others to enjoy. Instead of paying me, or charging them exorbitant entry fees.. all I wanted was for them to donate some cash to the charity. So.. to whomever left the $400 at my door. We thank you.. deeply. To those who think I'm funding my Vermont 100 trip... it's paid for.. but thanks for your donation.
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