The Gr8t Chase will hold its second annual 5K Run/Walk at Gateway Island Park at 7 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 26.
Bueller, an ’80s cover band, will rock out with the event’s “Back to the ’80s” theme, Star Wars characters from the Midsouth Garrison will be on hand, Krispy Kreme will be there with the “hot” sign on and the event will include other vendors and festivities.
Chase was diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma two days after his 10th birthday. He battled cancer for almost eight months before succumbing to the disease.
“Chase was like the sun: brilliant, radiant and able to light up the world,” said Jennifer Yeatts, Chase’s mother and founder of The Gr8t Chase. “He was a rare soul who found caring and loving others an easy priority. Throughout his fight, he still put others’ needs and wants before his own.”
When he was asked by the Make-A-Wish foundation what would he like to have or do, he asked for new gym equipment for his school, rather than anything for himself.
At the end, he didn’t fear dying, he feared being forgotten, Yeatts said.
The foundation’s goal is to continue Chase’s legacy by putting others first, helping where we can, and choosing hope in dark circumstances.
More from Yeatts on the mission of The Gr8t Chase:
It is our goal to continue to raise awareness for childhood cancer, and other childhood illnesses while making it easier on those who live with that disruption of their lives. Helping ease the burden for those in the fight is exactly what Chase wanted to do.
Matthew 17:20 (KJV) says, “and Jesus said unto them, because of your unbelief: verily I say unto you, if you have faith as a grain of a mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible to you.”
Chase had a way of leaving you with a mustard seed, and now, we will move mountains for him. It is time to have a “C” word that causes smiles, instead of fear; one that can’t be forgotten: The Gr8t Chase.
While Chase was in the hospital we knew one day we would start a foundation to help others going through the same thing, as it was his spirit. After his passing we have concentrated efforts on raising funds for cancer research and grant wishes for first-time and recurrent cancer patients.
As a mom who sat beside a hospital bed for almost eight months, with very few nights at home, I know money, bills, worry and anxiety tend to add up. Worry alone for your child exhausts you. Time crawls, yet everything seems so out of control and that it needs to happen now. One tiny thing gone wrong depletes your energy, leaving you unable to think or solve problems.
While helping other families, it hit me what we wanted The Gr8t Chase to become. We had “adopted” a family who was having to live in Baltimore for months on end. The grass needed mowing, rains had flooded their shop, weeds were killing her landscape and insurance was telling them they had to come home, yet that was the only hospital that specialized in their child’s type of cancer. We wanted to fix it! All of it! Didn’t this mom have enough to worry about without grass sending her over the edge?
We want to ease those types of burdens. To have our foundation swoop in, like Chase, and help someone carry that load. To buy medicine when insurance says “no” and doctors say “it’s a matter of life and death.”
Mow a lawn.
Build a ramp for the wheelchair they now have to have to enter their home since chemotherapy has taken the use of their legs.
Help purchase a tombstone worthy of their loved one, not just one they can afford.
We want to help carry those burdens and lift them off our fellow cancer (and other life-limiting illnesses) families’ shoulders and let them focus on what really matters; being strong for who needs them.
That is The Gr8t Chase’s passion and mission.
The Gr8t Chase 5K, held Aug. 26, will be professionally chip timed by Rabbit Road Racing. Gateway Island is located at 1875 W. College St., Murfreesboro.
For more information on The Gr8t Chase, visit thegr8tchase.org, call 615-495-3922 or email email@example.com; or register for the race here.