Amanda Bassett knew she had a tough road ahead of her. With predicted rain, wind and temperatures usually found on the East Coast, logging 26-plus miles in the Los Angeles Marathon was going to be an even bigger challenge for this City staffer, who took it all in stride.
“My running partner and I were preparing for bad weather and had used hot pink duct tape on our shoes in case of rain … but rain didn’t come and instead we got smiles all along the race for our amazing shoes,” Amanda said.
This is the third straight year Amanda ran the LA Marathon to raise funds for ChildSHARE, a charity that helps find homes for abused and neglected children. Since she began racing, she has raised $5,062, with $2,711 raised from the March 18 marathon alone.
The nonprofit organization has found safe and loving homes for thousands of abused and abandoned children in Southern California since 1985. Two out of three foster children placed in a ChildSHARE home stay with the same family until they are reunited with relatives or adopted. Since 2002, one in three foster children in ChildSHARE homes have been adopted, which is almost triple the national adoption rate. The charity is near and dear to Amanda.
“I grew up in an abusive, alcoholic, and emotionally unstable home,” said Amanda, who recently married. “I would pray every night that someone would come and take me away from all of this. In college I discovered ChildSHARE, an organization whose sole purpose is to help rescue kids like me.”
To gear up for the big day, Amanda logged hundreds of miles, and on race day she found inspiration in and gave comfort to her friend.
“After the 13th mile, she was in a really bad place but wouldn’t stop,” Amanda said of her race partner. “I had promised to stay with her the whole time so I let her set our pace and did the best I could to support her. Finally after crying for two miles, she sat on a curb and called our friends to pick her up around mile 15.”
Amanda waited with her friend and then began the last 11-mile stretch on her own.
“At this point, I was so far behind in time that I had to haul it to make it passed a few checkpoints so they wouldn’t reopen the roads … When I left my partner, I wasn’t expecting to set a new personal record. I ended up averaging around 15½ minutes per mile after leaving my partner and crossed the finish line after 7 hours and 20 minutes, setting a new personal record by 3 minutes. I raised $2,711 for ChildSHARE and found a child a home!”
For more information about Amanda’s cause, visit http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/amanda-bellamy/la-marathon-2012.