If you have read my prior blog posts, I had shared my experience with loss and grief since losing my sister in May of 2015. A few months after my sister had passed away, I had a good friend pitch the idea about planning an event in memory of my sister. At the time, I was not ready. I was still trying to work through the grief process and it still felt too soon . In 2016, my dad brought up the idea again. We decided to form an event committee with two of our good friends. We started having weekly meetings and we eventually decided on planning a run/walk. This was my first time planning an event and to be honest, I had no idea what I was doing. I was so grateful for the help of Jen and Paul. We decided to have the event at Skelly’s Farm in Janesville. Skelly’s was the perfect setting with scenic roads and activities for families. Paul worked on contacting sponsors to help fund the cost of T-Shirts and supplies that were needed for the event. We were able to get several sponsors for the event and we are so grateful for their support. We would like to say a special thank you to Scott Wedige and Northwest Mutual for the very generous donation to our cause.
I had so many friends reach out to me in offering to help with the event. I was grateful for the support we received for our first year . We were able to line up enough volunteers, many others were donating beautiful raffle baskets and silent auction items, Daniel’s Sentry Foods donated a lot of food items and E & D water donated water for the race.
We had a family friend work on the Race Logo and we ended up decided on this.
We decided to become and official foundation and decided on the name Rachel’s Long QT Foundation LLC.
The months flew by with planning and before we knew it, it was October. Event day was here! The weather ended up being perfect. We had a lot of participants signing up that last week which was wonderful to see. The participation for our first year was incredible and it brought so many tears to my eyes. I can only hope that it will continue to grow every year.
The race went smoothly and we received positive feedback from many that were there. We hope to add a few positive suggestions that we received to the next year. We hope to add mile markers next year and make a few changes to registration to help things run a bit more smoothly. I also hope to not leave volunteers on the course for hours after the race is done, so sorry to the Lorrie’s!!!!!
We met other families that were also affected by the disease. We had a family come up from Chicago and a local family here who has been battling the illness for many years. I met another Woman who had lost her daughter to Long QT who was also living with the disease. It is so hard to see how many families are affected by this disease but it was very helpful to talk to others that understood our pain and struggle.
The SADS foundation was so wonderful. They sent us brochures and bracelets for the event. They reached out to our family on several different occasions and featured us in their own newsletter. They are such a great organization and it is great that we are able to support them and their research with the money that was raised from the event.
We are currently working on purchasing and AED for the Janesville area with the $7700 we raised and having all remaining funds to go to the SADS foundation. We have decided to make this an inaugural event and are hoping to set a new October date for 2017 very soon.
I cannot express enough how much I appreciate every individual that reached out to us and supported our cause. We could not have done this without YOU! Thank you for helping to honor and remember Rachel Lancour and to continue to raise awareness about this disease that affects so many individuals.