Miles for Melanoma 2014

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You may or may not have read a very personal blog post I wrote last year about my dear friend Tomasz Ziarko. If you haven’t read it, please take the time to read about a courageous, caring man who passed away after battling melanoma for years.

Tom passed away four days before the 2013 Miles for Melanoma 5K, which everyone who knew Tom was planning on participating in to support him. Because of my condition, I’m heat sensitive. When I get overheated, my vision gets blurry to the point I can no longer see properly. I knew walking in the middle of July might not be the best idea, so instead I made buttons for everyone to wear.

Tom3The TOM ZIARKO IS MY HERO buttons were delivered the day Tom passed away – a day earlier than I expected them to arrive at my house. It was a bittersweet feeling. I cried when I opened the package, but I couldn’t help but feel it was his way of telling me that he’s okay and still with us.

2014 brought with it a brutal finish to winter, so I didn’t have to deal with ‘overheating.’ I know I might have another rough summer, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to sit on the sidelines again. I don’t care what it takes; I’m going to figure out a way to walk three miles for melanoma and raise money to fight for a cure (or improved treatments for) a disease that, in Stage IV, only has a one-year survival rate ranging 41-59 percent.

My personal fundraising goal is $1,000. Please consider donating in memory of Tomasz Ziarko. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous about getting overheated, but if Tom can be so brave in his battle with melanoma that he never once made it seem like he was sick, then I can figure out how to do this and honor his memory. Thanks for your support! It means the world to me, our friends and Tom’s family.

Donation Link:

“You live for a good time, not a long time.” – Tomasz Ziarko


About Carrie Williams

Carrie Williams is TCW's managing/digital editor. She manages day-to-day editorial operations of the monthly print publication, website and social media outlets, contributes to a variety of feature articles and directs a team of interns, freelance writers and bloggers. In early 2013, she led the redesign of of TCW's brand strategy. Her blog, "Carrie On," is a blog of reflection and discovery, discussing how to push through life when you’re handed one too many curveballs. And finally, Ms. Williams is also executive director of the TCW Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit supporting underfunded women's and children's organizations.