My father was born and raised in Davenport. His brother and his family have lived there all of their lives. My dad started running in his 40's, and the Bix has always been his favorite. I think this year is his 30th year running the Bix. I have only run it six or so times, but each time I have run it with him, and I have the best memories.
Seeing my family, running the hilly course in the usually oppressive heat, and staying the rest of the day to enjoy a well-earned Bloody Mary and a few beers while listening to my dad and my uncle reminisce about their days in high school, attending St. Ambrose, their car clubs, and stories about my grandparents.
This past March my Dad was diagnosed with a rare form of lung cancer. Despite being hospitalized twice in the last couple weeks, he's still training! He knows he can't run the 7-mile course, but he is doing the Quick Bix.
My brother lives in Utah and I live in Massachusetts. We are both coming in and will be proudly walking with him, and who knows, maybe even racing a bit.
He taught us to be runners. He was the 27th U.S. person to run marathons on all seven continents. He took my brother to Antarctica for his first marathon, and took me to Spain for my first. As a family trip, he took us to Madagascar for the most unique and beautiful marathon--which I ended up winning for the women's!
My dad is the most amazing person, and the strongest person I know. A couple weeks ago, he was very weak due to the immunotherapy treatments. It's the first time he's ever been negative. He said that my brother Keith and I would have to push him in a wheelchair in order for him to "run" the Bix.
Today he proudly walked two miles. I'm grateful to run another Bix with him, and that this race is giving him the motivation to keep going and fight to overcome cancer!