Meet Miracle Mile Champion #10: Nicholas Sawchuk

Join The Origami Butterfly Project
The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon and ½ Marathon is October 21st and we’re honored to be the event’s title beneficiary. As we countdown to the Marathon we’ll introduce you to our “mile champions.” These 26 special children and teens, each with a moving story to share, will be designated a mile along the event course. They will serve as patient ambassadors – to motivate participants and engage the entire community in this vital fundraising event. Each child will have a fundraising page for their mile and many of the miles will have corporate sponsors. This week we introduce you to Nicholas and his very special marathon project!

Nicholas Sawchuk
Age: 11
Diagnosis: Pediatric Cancer – Brain Tumor
Hometown: Lancaster, Ohio

Nicholas had just started 4th grade last fall when he began having unexplainable seizures. A few months after the seizures started, Nicholas took what could be considered a miraculous tumble down his basement stairs and ended up at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, which led to a CT scan and the heartbreaking diagnosis of brain cancer. Nicholas underwent immediate brain surgery to remove the tumor and because of his type of cancer, it’s likely more surgeries will be needed in the future.  This means regular visits to Nationwide Children’s to meet with the cancer team. But Nicholas’ mom Jennifer is hopeful, passionate, and confident in their path ahead. She plans to run her first full marathon, the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon, this fall in support of her son’s battle. Jennifer says that “Nationwide Children’s Hospital a place where miracles can and do happen.” Until the marathon in October, Nicholas, his twin brother Benjamin and their brothers Alexander and Matthew are keeping mom busy with lots of bike rides, taking care of their pets, swimming and fishing.

Beautiful strings of origami butterflies will mark Nicholas’ mile along the marathon course to honor all children fighting a battle with cancer. Thousands of butterflies are needed and will be created with love and support by someone different, making each one as unique and special as the person who made it. Nicholas loves butterflies; to him they are beautiful symbol of freedom, transformation and hope. For us, they represent the transformation to healing and the hope for freedom from illness.
Come fly with us and support Nicholas by joining his team here! Email me Donna.Teach@nationwidechildrens.org if you’re interested in making butterflies for Nicholas’ mile. Watch this video for instructions to fold an Origami butterfly (this is just one example there are many more on the web).

Meet Nicholas this weekend at RunFest – July 7th – Landmark Aviation – 1-4 p.m. – Come meet 20 of our Patient Champions during the official kick-off to Marathon Training season. If you’re considering walking or running this fall, come learn from the experts. Food and fun for the entire family – and it’s free!
What Moves You? Get Involved!

Sign up for the Half-Marathon (13.1 miles) or Full Marathon (26.2 miles) – Runners and Walkers Welcome.

Become a Children’s Champion – If you’re already registered for the Marathon help fundraise for Nationwide Children’s Hospital while you train. We have all the tools to help you get started and motivate you along the way.

Volunteer –Email Lindsey at Lindsey.Gulliver@nationwidechildrens.org. Hundreds of volunteers of all ages are welcome and needed.

Donna Teach
Donna Teach is Chief Marketing & Communication Officer at Nationwide Children's. Her job is to help the hospital feel "connected" – Connected to each other, connected to our patients and their families, referring physicians, the community and the world.

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