Running aHEAD of Cancer 5k in Swarthmore Raises $40,000 for HEADstrong

Almost 14 years ago to the day that their lives were forever changed, Cheryl Colleluori stood in front of over 700 people sharing the last promise she made to her son Nick. Every participant, young and old had their own reasons for participating in this year’s event.  It was more than just a race, but a way for the community to come together and support those affected by cancer.

“When you run… run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must but never give up. As you cross the finish line in pride, remember each step you take is for someone who can’t” remarked Cheryl Colleluori, President of HEADstrong and Nick’s Mom. 

The transition of this year’s Running aHEAD of Cancer 5k to Swarthmore College from Ridley Park went off without a hitch. The scenic race course took runners and walkers throughout the town of Swarthmore and wrapped up on the campus of Swarthmore College. 

The event also benefited two local families whose young children are battling cancer, the parents of Roman O’Brien and Rosie McKenna were each presented with checks for financial assistance prior to the start of the race.

 “For me personally it’s just a reminder of just how precious life is. HEADstrong continues in Nick’s memory as a last promise made to him. For the last 12 years we are so proud of our direct service to those affected by cancer” Cheryl said. 

HEADstrong would like to thank our sponsors for this event, which was by far the largest event to date for the Foundation. The presenting sponsor of the event was Life Brand, other sponsors included M & T Bank, Cellucci Foran Insurance Co, beMarketing and numerous others. HEADstrong thanks you for supporting our mission of improving lives affected by cancer. 

Coming in first place overall for the men with a time of 17:13 was Steve Sinko of Newark, Delaware. Second place overall was Franky Scandle of Ridley Park and third place was Lou Taranto of Toms River, NJ. Coming in first place overall for the females with a time of 22:31 was Lisa Victorious of Wallingford, second place was Adrianna Borgia, and third place was Emily Harris of West Chester. Swarthmore’s Will Slootmaker came in first place for the 14 and under category, followed by Davis Peterson of Haverford in second place,  and Jack Regan of West Chester rounded out the top 3 with a third place finish.

There were runners of all shapes, sizes and ages, even some four legged friends could be seen strolling along the race route. But something in particular caught everyone’s attention, and no it wasn’t a dog this time. Fusion Inclusion and Cade’s School partnered up and had 9 students ride in race scooters. Steve Sinko is president of Fusion Inclusion, the group is dedicated to making exercise and athletics accessible to all no matter their physical capability. The kids who weren’t able to run the race physically were pushed in the scooters by their therapists, a very special moment for everyone involved.  

The event raised over $40,000 for the HEADstrong Foundation. Mark your calendars for next year’s Running aHEAD of Cancer 5k September 2020!