FORT LEE, N.J. — Stamina, determination and a desire to shine a brighter spotlight on multiple sclerosis will culminate for Melissa Schmidt of Wisconsin on Aug. 11 in Fort Lee, as she closes out the fifth annual MS Run the U.S. relay.
"I am excited to be a part of MS Run the US for the third consecutive year," she said. "I feel the advancements in multiple sclerosis research seems very promising for an eventual cure."
Schmidt, who has cumulatively run 550 miles and raised $34,700 for the cause, counts her aunt Alice, who has lived with MS for more than 50 years, as part of the motivation to participate.
"Along with my aunt, I've met many more people impacted by this disease," she said. "They fuel my fire to train and run the distance to help bring awareness and raise funds for research toward a cure."
The relay begins each year mid-April near Los Angeles and finishes mid-August in New York.
To participate, each runner commits to raising $10,000 across 10 months and to running approximately 160-miles over six consecutive days during their assigned relay segment.
There are 18 segments for 18 runners. Each segment is logistically coordinated back-to-back as part of the collective team effort to run 3,100 -miles over 4.5 months.
Proceeds are given to the National MS Society and the Center Without Walls to assist those living with disability from MS.
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