4th annual Gumbo Gopher 5K Run/Walk is Sept. 21
By Sandy Bond
“If you’re looking for a beautiful road race (dirt road, that is) through the beautiful hills of the tiny town of Lowry, population nine, then the fourth annual Gumbo Gopher 5K Run/Walk, scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 21, is the race for you,” said one of the organizers, Tanna Huber.
Individuals, businesses and organizations can help sponsor the race at $100 and their name will appear on the official race shirt.
This year the race will also include two children’s races and are both free: ages six and under and seven through 12.
The race was first started to raise money for ovarian cancer research in memory of Sonja Huber. Founders were reportedly surprised at the success and support with around 150 total participants and more than $4,000 raised. Although considered a huge success, the support has only grown. The fundraiser continues to support the New Hope Foundation and each year, along with the New Hope Foundation, they pick a family in need of financial support that is facing cancer from those candidates submitted.
This year the group chose Kyah Feyereisen, the daughter of Justin and Dawn Feyereisen who attend Lakeside Bible Church in Mobridge. According to DeDee Begeman of Selby, Kyah, who is a fifth grader this fall, was diagnosed with a brain tumor three years ago and is going through her second round of chemotherapy to shrink it as they can’t operate on it.
“She had to be driven to Bismarck every week for six months for these chemo treatments and goes to Minneapolis often, too. She has a great attitude, as do her parents. She is their second child of three and they are expecting their fourth in November. She is a sweet girl and sings on the worship team at Lakeside,” said Begeman.
Another beneficiary, Dale Schmeichel, was diagnosed as having a Myxofibrosarcoma tumor in June 2013.
According to Georgia Schmeichel of McLaughlin, Dale is the father to three children and grandfather to four grandchildren. He and his wife live in McLaughlin. Myxofibrosarcoma is a rare form of cancer that spreads quietly and seeks out soft tissue in the body. Originally, the doctors thought it was a fatty tumor and a simple surgery was attempted, but the surgeon realized after he removed it that the diagnosis was incorrect. Because he did not know what he was removing, another surgery will have to be performed. That one will be more extensive and will involve removing tissue, muscle, and possibly some bone. The surgery will leave a hole, which will have to be filled by grafting skin and muscle from another part of his body. A plastic surgeon will be involved in this specialized surgery, which will be at the University of Minnesota. Dale has just completed five weeks of radiation in Bismarck and his surgery will be sometime in September. The surgeon said he most likely will not walk normally after the surgery, and he will not be able to work for a period of time.”
Last year half of the proceeds were given to the New Hope Foundation in Mobridge and the other half to the Wolcyn family of Cambridge, Minn., whose (at the time) 10-month-old daughter, Siena was diagnosed with leukemia.
Registration will begin at 8 a.m. at the picnic tables in front of the Lowry Pilgrim Community Church. This year’s race will start at the Luke Perman family mailbox and will end 3.1 miles northwest near the church.
Food and fellowship will follow the race. For more information, contact Brett and Tanna Huber at 649-1120 or gumbogopher5K@gmail.com.
“In 2012, my daughter-in-law Christine and granddaughters Jayda and Kendell and I participated in this wholesome family activity,” Bev Sawinsky, of Selby, said. “From toddlers in strollers to grandparents walking or biking, it was a fun and beneficial outing.”