Walk Ahead for a Brain Tumor Cure is Oct. 17

Family honors father by walking

Gary Thompson was a giver. Whether he was volunteering at church, traveling to Haiti to help after an earthquake or simply dropping off his signature chocolate chip cookies at a friend’s house, his generous nature defined him.

His family and friends will honor his memory at the 12th annual Walk Ahead for a Brain Tumor Cure 2K/5K walk/run at Sawyer Point in downtown Cincinnati on Sunday, Oct. 17. The event raises funds for research at the University of Cincinnati Brain Tumor Center at the UC Gardner Neuroscience Institute

five adults smiling and linking arms

Gary Thompson with his wife and children. Left to right, Gary, Krissy Thompson Richard, Matthew Thompson, Karen Thompson, Joshua Thompson. Photo/provided.

After Gary was diagnosed in 2017 with a glioblastoma brain tumor, his daughter, Krissy Richard, says a friend recommended the UC Brain Tumor Center.

“In five minutes into the first appointment, my mom said, ‘We’re staying here at UC,’” she remembers. “The level of expertise was so obvious, and it was clear that UC was the best choice for us.

“My dad felt very cared for and was treated as a special individual. That personalized attention really made the difference.”

Gary’s medical care and the encouragement he received from friends inspired his family to become involved in Walk Ahead for a Brain Tumor Cure and create the team #DadStrong.

“It is a hard thing to go through even when you have support, and we wanted to help other families by raising funds,” Krissy says.

Sadly, Gary passed away a few weeks before #DadStrong’s first Walk Ahead in 2018. It is now a family tradition, along with making his special cookies on his birthday and giving them to friends. “His legacy was serving people,” Krissy says. “He was really good at it and had a heart for helping.”

To register for or donate to Walk Ahead, visit walkahead.org

Registration is being offered for in-person attendance or as a virtual participant. This event will follow all CDC guidelines and local COVID restrictions. Virtual registrants will have the opportunity to transfer to an in-person registration or remain a virtual participant.

Featured image: Team #DadStrong at the 2019 Walk Ahead for a Brain Tumor Cure. Photo/Provided/Krissy Richard.