While finishing up a half marathon in South Mississippi this weekend we were told about an older gentleman, Mr. Glenn, who had fallen and was bleeding from his face, arms and legs. The EMTs tried convincing him to stop but he refused. He told them that he was going to finish. They also told him that the race timer was getting cutoff at 11AM to which he also said he didn’t care, as he was wearing a stopwatch around his neck.
We tracked down the race director and were able to have someone radio in his location so we could go meet up with him and help him finish the race. We caught up with him with about a mile to go.
He had to to make a few rest stops along the way but he was always conscious of the time. He kept asking how much more time he had b/c he didn’t want his break to make him miss the cutoff. He kept asking when the next turn was and how much further he had to go.
After he crossed the finish line we grabbed him a chair and he sat right there under the inflatable finish line. Right in the middle of the road. Too exhausted to move any further. We were able to sit and chat with him for a while and learned that his complete story was more amazing than what we thought we knew. He told us that he fell while trying to pick up a piece of trash, a ziplock bag that had blown out of his bag while running. Someone else told him not to worry about it that they would get it for him but he refused. He insisted on picking it up himself. Leaving it on the ground was not an option (I immediately thought of all of the GU packets that see see littering the road at every other event). As he leaned over to pick it up, he slipped and took a nasty fall. They were able to bandage him up enough so he could finish the race without the blood affecting his vision too badly.
Then he asked me if I wanted to hear something that was even more amazing than him finishing this run after falling. He then informed us that he is about 15 months post coronary artery bypass surgery. Not a single, double, triple or quadruple bypass surgery but a 7 bypass surgery!!! I don’t even know what that is…..septuple?!
He was such an inspiration to everyone who was able to witness his heart and pure determination.
May God bless you with many more miles Mr. Glenn!!!
Here’s a video of his finish!!