I\'m asking everyone I know, and even those of you I don\'t, for help. Dana Hardy is a friend, and she could use all of our help. She is a mother of two, Carter and Addy, and a wife to Matt (no easy task in itself). She has been diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy and a resulting ventricular arrhythmia, heart muscle disease, and is in need of a transplant. As you can imagine, the costs for a transplant are astronomical, and in the first year alone it\'s estimated at $787,700! I can\'t even begin to do Dana\'s story justice, so please go here to read it in her own words. She is truly an amazing person.
My plan is to run the Pittsburgh Marathon to raise money to help Dana and Matt through DanasHope.org. Dana will be unable to work for some time after the surgery and the expenses associated with the transplant that are not covered will be significant. These donations will allow Dana and Matt some flexibility in dealing with the daily living expenses that will result.
I know making a donation is a sacrifice, so I am going to make one as well. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am not a runner - never have been a runner. But since Dana\'s first experience with her heart disease came while running at track practice, I thought it would be a fitting tribute to run a marathon. I run 20 miles a week at best right now, not 26.2 in one day, but in about 12 weeks I plan on finishing one way or another. I\'ve set up a twitter account @mgaul8, and will send out occasional updates to anyone who cares to see my progress. At the very least, you may get a few laughs at my expense. The Pittsburgh Marathon is on May 6th, so we only have a short time to raise as much we can. Please help me keep my motivation to finish the marathon and donate what you can. Dana, Matt, Carter, and Addy are a great family, and they deserve our help.
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