Message from Tom Coones

Welcome to our 16th year! Our event mission is to honor the lives of Jared and Jayne. Jared was ten years old when he passed away after a lengthy courageous battle with leukemia in 1998. Jayne was reunited with Jared in Heaven in 2006 after a difficult fight with breast cancer. We come together to honor their lives and create an event that celebrates family and community.

We also raise funds for research and organizations that support cancer patients and their families.  This journey started a year after Jared’s passing and has continued to grow.  Along the way, a lot of amazing things have happened.  My family continues to be surrounded by an incredible community that has always supported the Pumpkin Run.  Black Bob Elementary School has been an integral part of this event.  For the past 15 years, Dr Barry Cook and the staff at the school have opened their doors and welcomed us in each year.  We literally come into the school and take over for the week prior to the race.  One of my favorite parts of this event is to walk into the school and be greeted by the children and staff.  Each year, the 4th and 5th grade students help us put together over 4,000 packets for race participants and fold t-shirts.  Everyone goes out of their way to make this event special.  Black Bob Elementary hosts our volunteer dinner every year, and they allow packet pickup and early race registration to take place at the school.  Teachers and staff are encouraged to wear their Pumpkin Run shirts on the Friday before the race, and they provide a tailgate lunch for us.  They have a school running team called the Black Bob Blazers and every year, I get the privilege of talking to the kids and coaches and running with them during their last practice before the race.  It is always incredible to me to see the school come alive as race morning progresses.  They even host our awards ceremony after the event.  The school’s support means a great deal to me because Jared and his sister Meghan both attended Black Bob Elementary School.  I love the connection with the school and sincerely appreciate their continued love and support.

We are grateful for this and the many other examples of community backing we receive.

On behalf of my family, thank you for the continued support you have provided to this event. Whether this is your first year participating or you’ve been with us since the beginning, we’re thrilled you’ve joined us on this adventure!

Blessings,
Tom