Sherry Arnold is a woman I never met.
She is the cousin to a Beth, a woman I've never met.
On Saturday I joined thousands of people around the world and ran in her memory.
When news of her disappearance hit blogland about a month ago, it spread like wildfire among those who run. Obviously the hope was that she would be found alive and well after she disappeared just minutes into her Saturday run in her small town of Sidney Montana.
Unfortunately that wasn't to be the ending of her story.
I have been amazed many times of the past few years at watching not only friends who have never met in person, but also complete strangers band together in support of someone who is in need. I have seen it over and over through blogs of other runners via virtual races, fundraising efforts for big causes and no so big causes, and promotion of charity races. I've experienced it first hand with a local charity as I've had the opportunity to work with them on races that are planned for months, and those thrown together with only days or weeks notice when something tragic happens in our community. It's truly incredible.
Any excuse a runner has to get out and run is great. Running with a cause is greater.
There have been so many words tumbling around in my head as to my thoughts as I ran reflecting on Sherry, and on the amazing worldwide support of a cause in her honor. But no matter how many times I try and put them down here in black and white, it just isn't coming out the way I want it to. So instead of rambling about it, I'll leave you with words from a song that came up early on my playlist in this run. Though they were written with something else in mind, they seemed very fitting for this situation.
I run for hope
I run to feel
I run for the truth, for all that is real
I run for your mother, your sister, your daughter, your wife
For you and me my friend
I run for life
(Melissa Ethridge, I Run for Life)
Five very cathartic miles in memory of someone who will never have that opportunity on this earth again.
Baby girl and I running for Sherry, joining in with those who ran this weekend, to celebrate that despite the fact that evil will always exist in this world, goodness, hope and love will always, always prevail.