Jul 06, 2017

13 YEARS OF RUNNING RACES AND COACHING OTHERS TO DO THE SAME COMES DOWN TO THIS.........THE 2017 IRONMAN WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP IN KONA.

In case you made it to this site unfamilar with what an Ironman is: it is a 2.4 mile swim followed by a 112 mile bike ride followed by a 26.2 mile run.

In case you made it to this site unfamiliar with the story that was the catalyst launching me into a world of cancer fighting: it started in September 2002 when my father was diagnosed with leukemia. I did not think it could get much worse than that but the next 15-16 months would test my family and I.  Shortly after my father's diagnosis, my wife became pregnant with our daughter Isabella. On July 31, 2003, what was supposed to be a celebration of our 4th wedding anniversary turned horribly wrong.  With just a few days until her official due date, Isabella passed away at birth. This was harder than words could ever describe and it also took away some of the fight in my father and he was soon after pronounced terminal.  On January 12, 2004, my father lost the war with cancer.  A few months after this, while already in a high risk pregnancy with our son Jaden, my wife was diagnosed with cancer.  It was surreal and unbelievable and true. Thankfully my wife beat the cancer on this occassion and 5 years later when it returned.  If you ever want the longer version of this story, please visit my blog at www.training2savelives.com or our website at WE WILL FIND A CURE

Those hardships really created the person I am today.  I was beat down but I stood up to fight back and make a difference. My losses defined me. My losses created me. My losses are what drive me on a daily basis.  That being said, these events are my personal story.  Everything I ever do is to try and make my father, daughter and wife proud but I do NOT want Ironman Kona to be about me.  If I am blessed enough to get to the finish line, I will certainly shed a tear because I like to believe my Dad and Isabella are at every finish line but this journey is about all of us. If you have lost someone to cancer, I am training for you.  If you are currently fighting cancer, I am training for you.  If you have children, I am training so that they may one day know a world without cancer.  To train for a race such as this will be a lot of work.  To get to the start line healthy will be quite a challenge for me because the last 3 years have been filled with rehab and surgeries following an accident in Sepember 2013.  Crossing the finish line will be equally as challenging because Kona is an animal of a race for a guy like me who a)has been through all of those surgeries and b)does not do well in heat........and the heat in Kona is brutal.  I am willing to do everything I can to push past these barriers but all of that will be meaningless if we do not raise the money which will help lead to a cure to end cancer.   

My goal is $130,000. It might sound impossible but I have seen impossible happen many times and I would like to see it happen one more time.  Nelson Mandela said " It always seems impossible until it's done".  When I coach for Team in Training.....the same organization that has blessed me with this spot in Kona......the Nelson Mandela quote is how I close out every season.  On October 14, 2017 when I hopefully run down Ali'i Drive some time before midnight, I hope to have proved the quote true one last time.  Won't you join me in making a huge impact on this world.   Won't you help me prove that anything is impossible.  Won't you join me in reaching your hand into the darkness to help those souls impacted by cancer.  I know them.  You know them. The sad stories are endless.  Let's make this story about hope.  I have asked many times before but I have to ask one more time...........please join me in this fight.  Please stand by my side.  Let's #BeatCancer together. 

Christopher D. Wilno

 

Go Chris!
Debra and Michael Kelley,
GO COACH!!
Paul Wintner,
You're a rock star, Chris! Very proud of you.
Brian Raymond,
Thanks for all you do, Chris!
Phyllis Ryne Bubar,
Good luck Chris. I have every faith in you! Thanks for all that you do! Jemma
Jemma Martin,
Very happy to support you Chris, thank you for all that you have done for the cause and for helping Jasmin and I grow in the organization. We will always appreciate it.
Team Fafa - Mike and Jas,
My best friend had leukemia, she lost her battle.. Thank you for your hard work and dedication.
Jane Cowles,
Dad would be so proud of you. Happy Easter !!
Marjorie Wilno,
Wishing you the best of luck.
Judy Williamson,
Chris- I was there the night you won man of the year, I've heard your story many times and it never ceases too bring me to tears--- and now I thank you for all that you continue to do--- all of you beautiful TNTers who help keep my husband alive (diagnosed 12 years ago- CML and NHL). Go make it your proudest of moments...... we will all be there with you in spirit
Beth Tarbuck,
You continue to be an inspiration Chris. Keep on fighting.. keep on pushing.. for yourself and others. Sending much love, strength, and appreciation your way. GO TEAM!!
Trisha Choate,
You wanted the majority of the donations in May? Be open to getting it in April, Chris! Shortly before your 2013 accident, you coached & coaxed me (w/ Lori) to persevere in my 1st half-marathon: * after I was freaked out by the heat before the run started when the sun hadn't yet risen; * after I fell & injured my leg but refused to quit even though it occurred near a first-aid station before the halfway mark; * after I could no longer keep up with any of my teammates; * after I barely snuck in at miles 9 and 10 in front of the sweepers. Even after I was pulled out for time at mile 11, when I couldn't stand or walk straight, when I probably was dehydrated, when my hate for being out in the extreme heat and sun hadn't abated, and when I felt ashamed for not completing the full length of the run, you stayed with me until you knew that I could leave being proud of what I'd done. 72 is a multiple of 18, the Hebrew letter Chai, representing life & luck. Best of all to you, my friend!
Ronel Wright,
Your determined spirit and persistence inspire us all. Thank you, Chris, for your continued selfless efforts to help those who need you. We are cheering you on!!
Virginia and Van Garner,
Thanks for all you do!
Renee Guirguis,
You are so inspirational Chris! <3
Allegra Williams,
Thank you for being an amazing leader and inspiration!
Sarah Harris,
Good luck Chris!!! Thanks for all you do!
Geri Weinfeld,
Best wishes!!
Marian Manzer,
Go Coach Chris! So proud of you!
Aubrey Walton,
We support you in your journey! - James Suarez and Family
James Suarez,
Good luck with the Iron Man - I'll be thinking of you sitting on my couch eating a cheeses pizza!
Jim Dugan,
Chris, what you are doing and have done is amazing! We are happy to make a donation to your foundation. The Team at Coastal Floor in SC. Gigi & Johnny Freeman
Gigi Freeman,
Your dedication to finding a cure for cancer is amazing! I know you won't stop until you do. Thank you Chris from the bottom of my heart! &#10084;&#65039;
Katie Mattingly,
My son has finished 3 Iron Man competitions so I have an idea of how hard you are training! Saw the article about your fund raising in Fountain Valley Living Magazine. Hope this donation helps you meet your goal. Best wishes to you, and thanks for helping to cure cancer.
Sheri VanderDussen,
Keep on crushing it Chris!!! Impressed with your commitment and dedication as always!
Anonymous,
To my amazing coach..friend..mentor and hero..you are going to rock Kona! Love to Crea and the kids..Get er done dude! Love u all to the moon and back! Take that Cancer!! Don't mess with Texas lol and don't mess with Cancer Warriors! We've got this..love love
Laura Maloney,
Your passion is inspiring! Good luck in Kona, Chris!
Gary & Wendi Nitti,
Go Coach Chris!
Jack Archey,
Well done! You can do it! So inspirational!
Farah M,
happy birthday
leah beck,
Kick cancers butt!
Law Offices of Esther Hopkins,
Aloha! Go, Chis Go!
Ross & Aman Prout,
Closer everyday!
John Stirrat,
Way to go, Wilno! You're an inspiration.
Emily Chung,
Good luck with your training!! Thank you for your dedication to the cause!
Meghan Fitzgerald,
This donation is a company Charitable Gift Match, matching a donation made by one of our employees, Brooke Dourian.
Anonymous,
thank you Chris, for your strong spirit and your dedication to defeating this debilitating disease. Despite the personal tragedies that you overcome, you are blessed and we are blessed by knowing you.
Carlos Gonzalez,
Much respect to you Chris! Thank you for fundraising. Supporting you, the LLS and all those fighting! Honoring those who are now our Angels! Best of luck to you for the rest of your training until Kona!
Amy Tran,
Bless you!
Rich Cruse,
Go Chris Go!
Jennifer Farina,
You are an amazing Coach and athlete. I am honored to have trained under you and now to support you in the journey. Go kick booty in Kona! #GoTeam!!
Danielle Pinnt,
You are an inspiration, Chris!
The Gutto Family,
I believe in you, Coach! There's MauraUtoLove!
Maura McCartan,
It's my 40th birthday so I'm donating to some of my favorite organizations today. Thank you for doing what you're doing. It sucks losing dads and loved ones to cancer. You continue to inspire me and I will be rooting for you to have healthy, successful training and an awesome race!! GO TEAM!
Beckie Burns,
Much more inspirational than marketing.
Leslie Stevens,
So inspired by you! And we are honored to know you.
Jen Labrocca & Joe Pease,
Go Chris go!!!
Nick Cutri,

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