Letter: Heroes of the Upper Valley

To the Editor:

On behalf of the CHaD Hero Half volunteer race committee and CHaD staff, I write with heartfelt appreciation for the critical role our community played in the success of the CHaD Hero Half Marathon & Ripcord 5K on Oct. 21. In case you haven’t heard, 2,800 of you raised over $570,000 for CHaD, with boundless energy, generosity, hard work and sweat. Unbelievable!

The event was about so much more than running or passionate fundraising. Without fail, the CHaD Hero Half is a wild and crazy, exciting and deeply emotional day, all about heroes. Everyone has a reason for being a part of this event. Some stories are heartbreaking, some joyful, but all have a common link — and that is to help CHaD. We all aim to support the resource that helps our kids stay healthy and takes care of them when they’re not.

I watched teams of devoted family members, friends and CHaD caregivers supporting one another through unfathomable hardship. I saw first-time half-marathoners gutting it out with help from over 100 Dartmouth athletes who formed a high-five gauntlet in the starting chute as participants headed out on course. I saw kids helping kids — perhaps the most hopeful and proactive force on earth. And heroes hugging, everywhere.

Upper Valley, you are amazing. You have defined the CHaD Hero Half over these past seven years of growth.

We are so grateful for all who participated. We want to say a special thank you to the broader community who patiently waited in traffic to let our runners pass safely through the course. Unprecedented numbers caused some of the delays and we are already working on adjustments for the future. And finally, we extend special acknowledgment to the leadership and students of Dartmouth College for their spirited and significant support and participation this year.

As we say in the CHaD Hero Half starting-line oath: Heroes together! Thank you.

Nini Meyer

Engagement Director

CHaD Hero Half Community