NEWS

IMPACT: Cellcom Green Bay Marathon

June 12th, 2017

Story of Triumph!

Whether you heard about them from a social media share or read about them in the Green Bay Press Gazette or in Runner’s World Magazine, the story of Captain Jacob pushing his Angel Brian across the finish line and qualifying for the Boston Marathon together is one that gives you all the feels.  But, what is even more spectacular, is that the story of Captain Jacob and Brian is only one of stories from that day. Every 144 myTeam Triumph-WI team members on the course had a story to tell and each member had a moment of Triumph in the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon.

One of those stories comes from Captain Katie;

On July 15, 2016, my life was forever changed. While driving my dog to the vet I took my eyes off of the road to check on her. When I looked back up the road had started to curve, and I had not. I was headed directly for some mailboxes. I attempted to swerve to miss the mailboxes and that was when the tires on my truck locked up, and my vehicle rolled several times.
Unbeknownst to me I had broken my neck and my back. I was transported by ambulance to aurora bay care. I went through almost 8 hours of emergency surgery. I had broken my C6-C7 in my neck, my T5-T9 in my back, and had damaged my spinal cord. After surgery my family was told I would never move from the neck down. I was diagnosed as a quadriplegic. By the grace of God, several hours later I moved my arms. My diagnosis became an incomplete quadriplegic, because I had movement below the injury site.
I was asked several times by doctors and therapists, what my goals would be, and I told the doctors and therapists that I needed to complete the Cellcom Green Bay half marathonin 10 months. Most of them looked at me with skepticism, and nodded their heads.
Prior to my accident, and injury I was a very active person. I had completed the Cellcom Green Bay half marathon three times prior, and was determined to complete it in 2017 to complete my medal set.
When I returned home from rehab in Chicago I spoke with a former coworker about the half marathon. His wife has been an angel for my Team Triumph, and he told me that no matter what, I would get my medal. I received some information from him about the my Team Triumph organization, and researched it online.
One of my best, and long time girlfriends, Becky Effertz, stated that she and her husband, Dave Effertz, would love to be my angels to help me complete the half marathon. Funny enough the three of us had run the race together 2 years earlier. I was also told that Dave’s cousin Becky Holleback Rands also would like to be an angel for me. In addition my sister, Jenn Bellovary, who had been by my side since the accident, and her husband, Tom Bellovary, also wanted to be angels for me.
My sister and I had done the race the year before and she stated she would never do it again, however she told me the day of my accident that she would do it and we would get that medal.
I told my angels on the day of the race I wanted to start it on my own two feet, and cross the finish on my own two feet. Whatever happened in the middle would be up to GOD to help me get through it. My team of angels was so amazing and supportive, it would have been impossible not to have motivation, and an excellent time.
The my Team Triumph organization, and all of the workers associated with it, are so encouraging and helpful. I have so many wonderful memories from the race it’s hard to narrow it down to one favorite. The support from fellow runners during the race is incredible. Doing this race 3 times prior to my injury/disability I always took it more serious. This was the first time I really sat back, literally at times, and reflected and appreciated what was happening. It was the most fun I have ever had doing a race, because of all of the support, and positivity.
As I reflect on that day my heart is still so full of happiness. I achieved my goal of starting and finishing the race on my own. I even accomplished more during the race then I thought was possible. As I crossed the finish line and saw my husband, my parents, and other friends, I knew that no matter what disabilities you have, if you have faith, and support from family and friends, along with an amazing organization like my Team Triumph, anything is possible, even the things that seem impossible.
Without the my Team Triumph organization I wouldn’t have been able to achieve this goal on my own. They made my dream of completing the Cellcom Green Bay half marathon, 10 months after becoming an incomplete quadriplegic, a reality.
I can’t thank my Team Triumph enough. I hope to continue to improve and maybe some day I can be an angel, and help someone else’s dream come true.” 

Captain Katie with her team of Angels before the race.

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