Monday, December 15, 2008


Steve with Katie, Sharon, Clay, Melane and Molli

Steve was absolutely radiant yesterday. The See Spot Run runners and huge support team lifted his spirits beyond anything I could have imagined. Last night he declared himself the luckiest man in the world.
More than one person has reminded me lately that as we are praying for the "big miracle" -- the cure for Steve's cancer -- we can't ignore the other miracles. At a church meeting tonight, Pastor Andy talked about miracles as signs of God that we notice in everyday life.

Sunday was definitely a day of miracles.
Steve was surrounded by love and peace and joy. His energy was infectious.

The weather was warmer and windier than I think most of us runners wanted. (I am thankful that we ran before the bitter cold blew through Dallas late Sunday.) And I think the thousands of White Rock spectators appreciated the pleasant conditions.

Steve, Allison and I stayed at the W Hotel the night before, thanks to Liz's early reservation. We were able to sleep relatively late and take our time getting ready -- we just took the elevator downstairs and walked outside to the starting area.

As the runners sectioned off into three starting corrals (based on expected running time), Liz and Holly took charge of Steve, helping him find a good spot to watch the start.
Liz and Holly
Then we were off!

Veteran Rock runner Steve had told Allison and me about the handbell choir we'd encounter on the first mile. And there they were, a reward at the top of a daunting Ross Avenue hill. I loved seeing and hearing the choir, knowing how much Steve enjoyed the music when he ran.

The next great treat was Sarah Wilke and Nancy Kruh cheering us on in Uptown. Not long after, we ran across the Domen family (Jeff and three adorable children), showing support for their Melanie and the See Spot Run team.

Melanie, Allison and I ran together for the first six miles. Melanie was the first leg of one of the relay teams, which switched at mile 6. About that time we spied most of the Smith family (Layne and three beautiful children), taking photos and giving high fives.

Allison and I kept running. As we ran along one side of Matilda, we saw Sally, then Stuart, then Jim, run back the other side. They were all ahead of us, and they all looked strong.

Just after we crossed Central Expressway for the second time and we started running south, the wind and accompanying dirt hit us hard. We trudged along.

The Katy Trail offered more surprises. The Brown family (Kris, James and their three gorgeous girls) plus the Domens again were there to boost our spirits. As soon as they saw us coming, they started hollering, and they didn't stop until we were out of earshot.

With about a mile to go, I was really dragging. I knew we would finish, but my legs and feet were unhappy.

Then we saw Will, not too far from the end of the Katy Trail. He told us that we were almost there, that the rest of the run was downhill, and that there was a big crowd of yellow waiting.

What an awesome sight! Liz, Holly and Melane had scoped out a great watching post and planted a camp chair for Steve. He was surrounded by Cooper and Katie (chaperoned by Grandma and Papa), a great crowd of more family, friends and runners who'd already finished. Over the fence I handed sweet Steve my finisher's medal.

He exuded joy.

Just after Allison and I finished

After lots of congratulatory hugs and kisses, we headed to the other side of the American Airlines Center to watch the full marathon runners cross.

Mark crossed with great speed and a huge smile. The See Spot Run relay team gathered to cross the finish line together. Then the See Spot Run 2 team finished strong.

Steve with See Spot Run: Randy, Andy (with son Jared), Paul, Chris and Melanie

Lisa (of See Spot Run 2) and Steve

Steve was exhausted, but he was drawing strength from "his" runners. He positively glowed, reflecting the love that was surrounding him.

And the day got even better. Check back soon for details on our surprise carolers!



For more photos, taken by Melane, Steve, Layne and me, click here.



Steve and Melane


Steve and Stuart

Uncle Jim

Tyra and Allison

Brooke, Katie and Molli

Jim, Betty, Uncle Jim, Cooper and Katie

Cooper and Will


Cooper, Katie and Sally



For results, click on each name:
Greg Woodbury
Sharon Grigsby
John Wise
Sally Sims
Stuart Cutright
Jim Damm
Allison Earwood
Tyra Damm (Allison and I actually finished four minutes faster than expected!)
Mark Tittle
See Spot Run relay team (Melanie Domen, Randy Lasley, Paul Duddleston, Andy Lewis, Chris Werner)
See Spot Run 2 relay team (Lisa Cutright, Kelly Huffman, James Demasi, Jackie Trey Harrison, Jason Lee)


Thank you to ...
* All the See Spot Run runners and their families and friends who supported them during training
* Liz, captain of the team, organizer extraordinaire and supreme motivator
* Jim and Betty
* Jim and Betty's awesome gang of friends
* Elaine Dunn
* Layne
* Holly Bassen
* Melane
* Kris Brown
* Sally
* Allison
* Richie Whitt
* Everyone who bought a shirt in support of Steve (Melissa, Norm and Roy: I'll mail yours this week!)
* Folks who sent good luck notes
* Everyone who prayed for us
* And to Steve, our inspiration. Out Damm Spot!


Sweetest Whimsy said...

How I wish we could have been there to cheer the team on! It was exciting just to read the recap! So, so happy for you, Steve, to have such a wonderful Christmas gift from everyone. :)

Stuart said...

"This was a great day!" I can't tell you how many times Lisa and I said that. New friends, old friends - all there for our real hero, Steve.

Steve - it was an honor to run - well, walk really fast -for you, my friend.

With love to the Damm's -

Lisa, Stuart, Hannah, and Henry Cutright