After he was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, Iram Leon, 32, decided to spend as much time as possible with his daughter, Kiana. Even if that meant pushing her through a massive, tortuous marathon.
Leon was diagnosed with grade two diffuse astrocytoma, a severe form of brain cancer, shortly after turning 30. He is divorced from Kiana’s mother and Kiana spends most of her time with her dad at their home in Austin, Texas. Kiana understands her father’s situation, and practices with her dad what to do in the case of an emergency, such as a seizure.
Originally, the race coordinators from the Gusher Marathon in Texas weren’t going to allow Leon to race with Kiana because strollers are not typically allowed. In fact, he was turned down four times before the marathon coordinators allowed him entry with the stroller, according the Huffington Post.
Ultimately, they gave in and let him participate. He won with a time of three hours, seven minutes, and 35 seconds.
Leon said that when he found out his cancer won’t be cured, he knew, “The one thing I’m not going to say on my death bed is, ‘I wish I spent more time with my kid.’”
Since the race, Leon has received a ton of local and national support because of his feat and his positive outlook on his situation. The marathon organizers have even set up a website to raise money for Kiana’s college education, which has received over $1,000 so far.
The runner also writes a blog about his experiences, and has written he is greatly humbled by the outpouring of generousity.
“There's something incredibly comforting about the fact that cancer and its side effects have ruined many things, but they haven't taken away my ability to run and love ... Perhaps the reason the universe was kind enough to let me win the only marathon that has ever let me in pushing Kiana was to remind me why it's letting me keep breathing, even if it's hard, a little bit longer.”
Source: Daily Mail