The first annual Mesothelioma Race for Justice 5K was a great success with over 100 participants including runners, walkers, supporters, and volunteers joining the fight for a cure. On Saturday, September 22, families and friends gathered at the Lake County Forest Preserve Half Day location for fun and philanthropy.
Together, participants and sponsors raised over $6,300, which will be donated to the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation to support their crucial work on behalf of patients and families. As the nation’s leading nonprofit dedicated to mesothelioma research, the Meso Foundation is on the front lines of creating a better future for patients.
This was Vogelzang Law’s first 5K race, and the firm hopes to continue to host a race each year with benefits going to cancer research. By hosting a race, the Vogelzang Law team aims to bring people together and raise awareness of the need for increased funding of research and clinical trials.
“Because mesothelioma only affects 3,500 people a year compared to breast cancer or lung cancer which are in the hundreds of thousands, it’s hard to get funding. Research money is so important,” said Lead Counsel Nicholas Vogelzang.
These funds will support breakthroughs in mesothelioma research, from clinical trials to research initiatives and educational tools for families. By supporting new research, the Mesothelioma Foundation brings doctors closer to finding a cure and improving the quality of life for patients after diagnosis.
“Any way we can help is important, and this is one of the most direct ways to get funding for that research to lead to a cure or to longer survivorship,” Vogelzang said.
Chris Hagn of Chicago led the race in honor of his father, a former Vogelzang Law client who passed away from mesothelioma. Mr. Hagn’s run represented the mission behind the race — to bring families and friends together in honor of those who have been affected by mesothelioma. He was joined by friends and families who have lost a loved one to the disease; from volunteers to runners, a sense of camaraderie and hope pervaded the event.
With 75 runners and walkers ranging from eight years old to 73, it was a day for the whole family to come together in solidarity with those fighting cancer. Participants enjoyed live music, food, and a raffle with donations that included Bulls tickets, snacks, and more.
“It’s really an exciting way to get everyone into the cause and see what we’re here for,” Vogelzang said.
Plans are already underway for the 2019 Mesothelioma Race for Justice, which will benefit further cancer research.