Meet Miracle Mile Champion #9: Parker MacDonald

Beating Cancer One LEGO at a time!!

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 Parker MacDonald and “Team LEGO”
Age: 12
Hometown: Granville, Ohio
Condition: Pediatric Cancer – Lymphoblastic Lymphoma

People often ask me, “isn’t it sad to work at a Children’s Hospital?” The answer is always a heart-felt “NO” – especially with kids like Parker MacDonald around! Parker’s courage and enthusiasm for “just being a kid” is what inspires me every day and I hope his story inspires everyone participating in this years’ marathon and ½ marathon.

Parker was just five years old when he visited the doctor to check out a lump on his head. A short time later, his parents learned the diagnosis – Lymphoblastic Lymphoma, a type of blood cancer. Nationwide Children’s Hospital became a second home for the MacDonald family, where Parker endured nine months of chemotherapy treatment. Throughout the needle pokes, the anesthesia and the unpleasant taste of medicines, Parker kept a remarkably brave and positive attitude. Now, seven years later, Parker is 12 years old and cancer-free. He is in the sixth grade and loves to learn, explore, and inspire others to give back. Raising money for cancer research has become a true passion for the MacDonald family.

Parker has another passion – LEGOS!! Parker and “Team Lego” plan to motivate runners during the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon with the same fighting spirit that got him through his life-threatening battle with cancer. You’ll recognize Parker’s mile by the LEGO theme – he loves building with LEGOs and plans to be an engineer when he grows up. Parker is looking for fellow “LEGO lovers and cancer fighters” to join his team. Find Parker’s fundraising team here. Also, check out this great video Parker made for his team. I think they have some big ideas – it should be great!

Join Us For RunFest – July 7th – Landmark Aviation – 1-4 p.m. – It’s the official kick-off to Marathon Training season and we’ll introduce all 26 of our patient champions and their “miracle miles.” If you’re considering walking or running this fall, come learn from the experts and meet many of our Miracle Mile Champions. 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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