The Gweneviere Mann Foundation

$42,013 of $1.0M goal

Raised by 295 people in 5 months
Created July 25, 2018
Team Gwen

The Gweneviere Mann Foundation  (GMF) was created to honor the memory of Gweneviere Mann, an accomplished musician, writer and marathon runner who overcame a brain tumor only to ten years later lose a battle with a rare form of lung cancer. Throughout her life, Gweneviere was committed to learning and growing as and artist and athlete -- and always thriving. GMF is dedicated to helping more people get scanned for brain tumor and lung cancer early so that they can thrive in life like Gweneviere did.

Gwen was a true star born to the earth who captivated everyone she met with her beautiful voice, contagious laughter, contemplative wisdom and generous loving heart. Giving boundless energy to those she held dear and even casual strangers, Gwen was a distinguished singer, pianist, songwriter, performer, and true storyteller in both San Francisco and New York City playing with local bands Stone Soup, SpunJunket, Divalicious, Wonderland, The CheeseBalls, and acapella group RoShamBo.
In 2008,  after Gwen recovered from a meningioma brain tumor and the short-term memory loss that occurred after its removal, she and Yasir began running together. Gwen completed seven New York City marathons and the Harrisburg marathon. She didn't stop there. She then graduated with honors from NYU with a degree in creative writing, attended Juilliard for music theory, and was accepted into Columbia’s MFA program. She harnessed her challenges to inspire her music and writing and recorded a new album and was working on her memoir. 10 years after being diagnosed with a brain tumor, a rare form of lung cancer took her life on July 22, 2018 at the age of 47. 77% of people with this type of cancer are non-smokers.

Gwen and Yasir's inspiring love story was chronicled by StoryCorps  through audio, animation, and Ties That Bind: Stories of Love and Gratitude from the First Ten Years of StoryCorps, a book by by founder Dave Isay. Their story was also featured by HowStuffWorks' Committed Podcast in May of 2018  and  August of 2018, a PBS  special, NPRWomen's Health magazine, TEDHuffington Post, and The Washington Post.

Gwen will always be remembered for her singing, storytelling, unconditional love for others, and ability to bring humor and laughter to the everyday occurrences she found around her.

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Update 15
Posted by Yasir Salem
17 days ago
Throwback to marathon #6 (Rocket City in Huntsville, AL) on 12/8 in⁦‪‬⁩ Yasir’s #50in50 (50 marathons on 50 states in 1 year) for the ⁦Gweneviere Mann Foundation‬⁩. He ran a 4:14 marathon, despite the rain and cold.

Marathon #7 coming up on 1/13/19 in Orlando (Disney Marathon). Donate to the Gweneviere Mann Foundation at gofundme.com/gwenmann to support early detection for lung cancer and brain tumors.
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Update 14
Posted by Yasir Salem
21 days ago
Today I’m missing and remembering Gweneviere as I do every day. Today is a little harder because of the season. I feel a big void without her.

Last year (2017) Gweneviere and I spent Christmas Eve by seeing the new Star Wars movie at the IMAX in Manhattan. We loved seeing movies at what she called our ‘lay down theaters’ with cushy, reclining seats. We used to bring throw blankets, take off our shoes and change into comfy socks and hold hands throughout the movie (unless we were digging into popcorn or drinking seltzer). I miss her.

I have a break until marathon #7 of 50 in a couple of weeks at #disneyworldmarathon on Sunday, 1/13 (see full schedule and learn how to join us on the #50in50 to fund early detection of lung cancer and brain tumors at gwenmann.org/50in50)

The Gweneviere Mann Foundation thanks you all for all of your continued support. Wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday season. We’ll see you in the New Year!

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Update 13
Posted by Yasir Salem
1 month ago
​Happy Thanksgiving.

I’m thankful for all of your friendship and love. This time last year, Gweneviere & I were at our friends Marina and Murat’s place (pic from then).

Today I’m back here, and with our cats Hunky and Miwee, thinking about the good times with Gweneviere. Today also marks 4 months since she passed. Tomorrow I fly out to Seattle to run the Seattle Marathon (marathon #4 of 50 in the foundation’s #50in50 campaign) on 11/25, which also happens to be the 10th anniversary of Gweneviere’s craniotomy, or Craniversary as she called it, to remove a brain tumor. After that, she lived nearly 10 great years full of thriving, love and fulfillment and I’m lucky to have been her soulmate during that wonderful time in her life. She touched so many people, she lived so fully, and loved so deeply. I’m thankful for the life I had with her.

I ❤️ you so much Gweneviere


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Update 12
Posted by Yasir Salem
1 month ago
Marathon 1 & 2 of 50 complete: New York City on 11/4 and Las Vegas on 11/11.

We are now on the road to 50 marathons in 50 states in 1 year.

***NEW YORK CITY 11/4***
This race was all for my love Gweneviere and to honor her memory through the Gweneviere Mann Foundation (gwenmann.org).

This year's run was a deeply emotional and meaningful experience. If you don't know the story, back in 2008 Gweneviere survived a brain tumor/had a craniotomy. The procedure caused her to have anterograde amnesia, but she was a fighter and continued to thrive through her music, writing, and running. After her surgery, we set a goal to run the 2010 NYC Marathon, and had run it every year (except for 2012 when it was canceled; we ran Harrisburg that year instead). She went onto graduate with honors from New York University writing program, attended The Juilliard School, and was due to start her MFA in Creative Writing at Columbia University this Fall. With every amazing accomplishment, Gweneviere inspired me to set new goals for myself whether it was serious (like learning how to swim so that I can complete 4 Ironmans) or not so serious (like winning championships in the Tour de Donut bicycle races).

I am humbled that the Gweneviere Mann Foundation received incredible press coverage on ESPN, CBS New York, ABC7NY, StoryCorps, Committed Podcast.

I met and was inspired by fellow NYC Marathon runners Nev Schulman, Tiki Barber, Teri Hatcher who were all running for great causes themselves.

***LAS VEGAS 11/11***
Marathon 2 in 50 (@runrocknroll Vegas) in my #50in50 for the Gweneviere Mann Foundation done! This was a great course that starts at 4:30pm on the Las Vegas Strip, and ends on the strip. It was a 26.2 mile dance party with live music, lasers, vegas lights and A LOT of cheering Elvis impersonators.

I ❤️ you Gwen. ‬ 48 more states to go. Philadelphia Marathon tomorrow!‬ ‪

Next marathons on the schedule:
-PA (Philadelphia) 11/18
-WA (Seattle) 11/25
-TN (Memphis) 12/1
-AL (Huntsville) 12/8

Join me on the #50in50 for the Gweneviere Mann Foundation, with many ways to get involved: http://gwenmann.org/50in50

***Please download Gweneviere’s song***

She was excited about releasing an album she had just finished, but she passed before she could realize that dream, so we just recently released a single "What I Can Be" off of her album for her so that we could fulfill that dream for her. Download it here: https://www.gwenmann.org/music/

Together we will save lives through early detection programs for lung cancer and brain tumors.
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$42,013 of $1.0M goal

Raised by 295 people in 5 months
Created July 25, 2018
Team Gwen
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