Local breast cancer survivor prepares for 16th half marathon

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – There’s a quick pick-me-up before the North End Run Club takes to the streets. And in this huge crowd of runners making their way from their meeting place at Cox High School, breast cancer survivor Inge Thieleman, is training for this weekend’s Rock and Roll Half Marathon on the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.

“I work a 10-hour shift, and after my shift, I come out of work, I go for a run. After my flight, I go door-to-door making donations to St. Jude for the children,” Inge told us.

She has a special bond with those kids who are battling cancer. Three years ago, Inge was treated for breast cancer. The mother of three continues to take a daily pill form of chemo.

And for others in a similar struggle?

“My message to them is: get up every day and try the best you can do. Do the best for yourself, for others. Don’t look back, look ahead. The future has a lot to offer. Never give up – Fight until it end!”

This is not the first time Inge has done this. This is her 16th Rock and Roll Half Marathon, raising more than $20,000 for St. Jude’s Children Research Hospital, and she says there’s one thing that keeps her going.

“I’m tired, I’m exhausted, but thinking about these kids keeps me going. It gives me all the energy in the world to move forward and do what I need to do for them,” she said.

She says running for them gives her peace of mind.

“You know, I go to bed at night and I say, ‘Okay, I can sleep well because I know I’ve done my deed.’ And it’s not just that – the Lord gives me strength. God gives me strength every day. I pray to Him every day. I say, ‘Lord, please, lead me through this.'”

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For those reasons, News 3 presented Inge with a People Taking Action award, along with a $300 Visa gift card from our community partner, Southern Bank.

“Oh my God! Thank you!”

And immediately Inge asked if she could take the money from the gift card instead and give it to St. Jude.

To nominate someone for a People Taking Action Award, click here.

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