‘Ottawa’ Fun Run Saturday to Support ‘Butterfly Boy’ Jonathan Pitre
The organizers of a series of free fun runs are dedicating the final instalment of 2016 on Saturday to showing support for Jonathan Pitre, who is awaiting a second stem cell transplant at a Minneapolis hospital with his mom, Tina Boileau.
The 2016 5K Run Series presented by Run Ottawa and Sports 4 wraps up Dec. 3 at the Canadian Agriculture and Food Museum on Prince of Wales Drive.
Organizers are inviting runners and walkers of all ages, from aspiring Olympians to beginners, to tuck $5 into their jackets for the event on the scenic Experimental Farm. Registration is at 8:30 a.m. and the race begins at 9 a.m. Volunteers will be accepting donations.
Pitre, 16, has a severe form of epidermolysis bullosa (EB) and underwent a stem cell transplant — the only real treatment for the rare and agonizing skin disease — on Sept. 8. It wasn’t successful so Pitre and Boileau are now far from home awaiting a second attempt in March.
Run organizers hailed the mother and son, who completed a 5k this summer with Jonathan in a wheelchair to raise money for people with EB, as “inspiring, brave, unselfish, remarkable.”
“Jonathan and his mother, Tina, are courageously doing everything they can to get to the finish line and return back to Ottawa. The expression, ‘This is a marathon, not a sprint,’ certainly applies to them.”