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The Kyle Pease Foundation Blasts Through the Tape as 2017 Rolls to a Close

The Kyle Pease Foundation Blasts Through the Tape as 2017 Rolls to a Close

Hello to everyone in KPeasey Nation.  Well as the calendar is about to flip to another year and your local bank or insurance company is about to send you a replacement, I thought it would be fitting to recap some of the highlights of what his been a magical and incredible 2017. 

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The past six weeks especially have been busier than ever before as we were filled with many events that took us out of our home base of Atlanta and allowed us to spread the message to several other regions of the country. One of our goals for 2018 and the future is how to share the Kyle Pease Foundation with a more wide spread area and this fall was certainly a glimpse into what the future of KPF may hold. 

Our fall season began in October at the Marine Corps Marathon where we had fifteen teams start and finish the 26.2 mile trek known as the People's Marathon and people, let me tell you. It was an incredible event. 

Our athletes rolled through the streets of DC with all of the famous monuments in the backdrop as thousands of fans cheered them on through the streets of the Nation's Capitol. The statue of Iwo Jima, Lincoln and Jefferson Memorial, the Washington Monument, the dome of the Capitol building and of course the Pentagon and the White House symbolically rooted our athletes on and made each of us realize how lucky we are to be part of a nation where inclusion is not only accepted but it cheered for. 

As we celebrated the triumph of that weekend, we moved into Camp Wheel Away, our annual camp which allows those with disabilities to participate in many assisted activities that they may otherwise not be exposed to.  This was an incredible weekend full of great camp activities, shared with many new friends and potential future KPF athletes. 

Next came a ground breaking weekend of sorts where we had three different teams competing in three different locations around the country. I was in Savannah GA with two athletes who were running the Savannah Marathon, while three racers were over a thousand miles away in the Big Apple competing in the NYC Marathon. Our executive director, my brother, Brent completed his 9th Ironman representing KPF in Panama City. One day, several racers, three locations all wearing KPeasey blue and sharing the message of acceptance and inclusion. 

What a groundbreaking year it has been. From having 42 athletes compete in the Publix in March, to Brent and I competing in Ironman Boulder, CO to everything in between. It was a banner year for the Foundation and prepares us to catapult in to a very exciting year ahead. 

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And don't forget bowling with KPeasey was another huge success.  The eighth edition was amazing to be a part of as hundreds of fans, friends and family enjoyed bowling, good food, good fellowship and fundraising. Congratulations to Cougar Clifford, who was awarded the Jake Vinson Award and to Justin Knight  for collecting the coveted Broken Wheel Award. Another congratulations to Lauren, Marin and the rest of the Greg Smith Family for the release of "We Wouldn't Have it Any Other Way," the third children's book in our "Where There's a Wheel, There's a Way Book Series. 

I would be remiss if we did not think all of our sponsors, donors, supporters fans and most of all the athletes and their families. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.  Words cannot express my gratitude for each and every one of you. 

The Kyle Pease Foundation Remains Busy with a Capital B!!

The Kyle Pease Foundation Remains Busy with a Capital B!!

As the saying goes, "If you want to get something done, ask a busy man to do it." Well as the summer comes to a close the Kyle Pease Foundation is getting it done, because we are BUSY with a capital B. and as you may suspect, we wouldn't want it any other way. 

We start off the weekend of September 24 in beautiful Augusta, GA with the 70.3 Augusta 1/2 Ironman, where the double Justins, Justin Dugan and Justin Knight will be taking on the land of the famous Green Jacket. The duo have done some local races together under the KPF umbrella but this will be their first 1/2 Ironman together and the first time a KPF has participated in this awesome Ironman sponsored event.

Our Camp Wheel Away Annual trip to Winder, GA is just beyond the horizon as KPeasey and friends invade Camp Twin Lakes for one of my favorite weekends of the year. This is a great time for anyone with a disability to get away and focus on what we do best;  bringing inclusion to the forefront. The weekend gives all participant the opportunity to learn about the Foundation, while participating in biking archery, camp fires, boating running and Smores galore!! There are still a few openings, but space is limited. The weekend is 100% funded by the Kyle Pease Foundation and Camp Wheel Away. Campers with any type of disability are welcome. Apply on our website and join us for the weekend of October 10-12. 

Once we recover from our weekend as one with nature we are off to the Nation's capitol and the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington DC.  The MCM is the largest race that KPF competes in outside of GA. It is always an honor to be there with the marines and all the men and women that protect our freedom. To see the kids smiling from ear to ear all the way from the hotel to the starting line is an absolute highlight for me. Many athletes will be competing dressed in KPF blue, while Brent and I will be there to play the role of Commanders in Chief of the KPF army. Special thanks to the Ability Experience who will be competing with us as well.

Before we even catch our collective breath we will be off to the BIG Apple and the NYC Marathon. This year  will be very special as we have three athletes competing as this is the first year we opened it up to other members of the foundation. We are so proud of the other athletes and their families as we return to the scene of our now famous Broken Wheel.

We close out the fall season with our annual Bowling with KPeasey event which is the culmination of everyone's accomplishments for this incredible year. More details will be following in upcoming posts and on our Facebook page in the coming weeks. The event is highlighted by the awarding of the Jake Vinson Family Grant. We've received a record number of applications but will keep on accepting them until the end of September. Applications are available on our website. 

As always thank you for your support. We could not do this without your love, kindness and  generosity. Together We Wheel, Kyle!

KPF Makes History in "The Grand Daddy of Them All"

KPF Makes History in "The Grand Daddy of Them All"

The 241st birthday of the United States was historic in more ways than one as nine Push Assist teams, representing the colors of the Kyle Pease Foundation, participated in  the "Grand Daddy of them All", the iconic Peachtree 10K Road Race. 

To take you back through the history of KPF's involvement in the Peachtree, we must take you back in time to the year 2013 when Brent and I made history as the first Push Assist team to participate in this historic race. One year later, race organizers, The Atlanta Track Club (ATC) and the Shepherd Center, granted us a second bib as Brent and I were joined by Justin Knight and Brian Resutek as participants. Now in 2017, through the continued support of both ATC and the Shepherd Center our numbers have blossomed yet again. 

"As we waited to start, Matt of Infinity Yoga, turned to me and said, 'Dude, we have the whole row.' It's amazing to think that in 2013 it was just us. Now it's beyond that. It's bigger than us. It's a collective We and one we are so proud of.  Together WE Wheel!"                                     ~Brent Pease

As I've shared on several occasions, the reason this race is so special to me is because it takes place right in my own backyard on the very streets that I call my home. From the moment the starter's pistol sounds to mark the beginning of the race at Lenox Square Mall to the point where  runners make their way down Peachtree Road, through the streets of Buckhead and Midtown before finishing in beautiful Piedmont Park, the Peachtree can be summed up in four letters...H-O-M-E!

The highlight takes place as we race by the Shepherd Center, where many of the patients line the streets and cheer us on as we make our way past this incredible facility. The Shepherd Center specializes in spinal cord & brain injury rehabilitation along with medical research as the top rehabilitation hospital in the nation, so it is apparent why they cheer on the KPF athletes so feverishly. Another highlight for me is when we whisk by Piedmont Hospital, where I've been employed for many years. Patients, staff and many dear friends come out of the hospital to cheer for Brent and I, as well as our other push assist athletes. My heart swells with pride as we pass both of these top-rated facilities. 

Brent and I finished third in the men's division with a credible time of 39:18. The men's division was won by Ricardo Aranda and Matt Shechtman, while second place was awarded to Justin Knight and George Darren. The push assist women's division was won by Naomi Hicks and Carrie Smith, while the coed division was won by Aiden Jackson and Carmen Brahmin. Winning participants in each of the push assist divisions were awarded  cash prizes by the Kyle Pease Foundation to acknowledge their accomplishment. 

We look forward to next year and the opportunity for KPF athletes to participate in America's Largest 10K. As always, our goal remains spreading the message of inclusion from sea to shining sea. 

Before we blow out the final candle on our country's birthday cake, let me take a moment to remind you to apply for the Jake Vinson Family Grant and to register for Camp Wheel Away. These are two of the highlights of our organization and we hope to make both opportunities available to as many families as possible. 

Until next time-Together We Wheel....

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And the Winner of the Inaugural Assisted Division of the Peachtree Road Race is...INCLUSION!

Ricardo and Matt win the Inaugural Assisted Division Peachtree Road Race.
PHOTO BY JORDAN D. HILL/JORDAN.HILL@AJC.COM
Hello K Peasey Nation...If you think the weather has been hot during the month of July, the Foundation schedule has been scalding. 

KPF started off the month on America's birthday with Atlanta's iconic race, The Peachtree Road Race, the largest 10k in the entire country with over 60,000 participants. That's a lot of athletes!

Peachtree even has a wheel chair division which was made up of 62 athletes this year. Brent and I have been working very hard along with the Atlanta Track Club and The Shepherd Center to create the first assisted division in the race's long and historic history. 

The inaugural assisted division was made up of five teams with the winners being Ricardo Aranda and Matt Shechtman who finished in a blistering time of just over 38 minutes. 

In an article published by the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Matt thanked Ricardo for his reassurance as "Schectman’s endurance weakened over time".
“Ricardo is an amazing lead and he keeps pushing me the whole way. He talked me off the ledge and kept me going. He’s an awesome puller.”
He continued, “The Peachtree is all about inclusion,” Schectman said. “Sixty thousand different people out here with 60,000 stories.”
It was a very historic Fourth of July with fire works all through the day and a perfect day to celebrate both independence and inclusion. What a perfect pair as in many ways the two travel hand in hand. 

Two days after Peachtree, Brent and I packed our suitcases and hit the road in the KPF RV with a final destination of Muncie, IN for the Muncie 70.3 1/2 Ironman.

It was great to see some familiar faces on the course each of which inspired us to a personal best of 33 minutes for the 1.2 mile swim. We followed that up with a great bike portion of 3:56 for the 56 miles ride and followed that up with a very solid 1/2 marathon for a personal record of 6:28:00.  

We can't thank KPF athletes Tina and Naomi Hicks enough as they made their way to IN to support us. 

Brent is participating in his own full Ironman race this weekend in Sonoma Valley, CA at Vineman. We will be rooting him on and encourage him to spend more time on the course than in the vineyards. 

We are getting ready for a very busy schedule with the Lekotek Fun Run on August 13, a local triathlon on August 27 and then the People's Marathon aka the Marine Corp Marathon on October 30th in the Nation's capitol just a few days before the presidential election.  

Don't forget to check out our site for information about Bowling with Kpeasey, The Jake Vinson Family Grant and of course, Camp Wheel a Way!

As always, Together We Wheel!

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KPF Schedule Is As Pretty as a Peach (Tree)

It seems as though I start off each blog post with the same general sentiment and that is to say, "It's a busy time of year for the Kyle Pease Foundation and our calendar is filling up by the week." That's because it's a busy time of year for the Kyle Pease Foundation and our calendar is filling up by the week.

We had a record breaking turnout for the Virginia Highlands 5k and everybody seemed to have a great time including new and veteran athletes alike. Now we turn our attention to the largest 10K in the United States;  The Peachtree Road Race which just happens to be in our back yard of good ol' Atlanta, GA.  

We so excited that the Atlanta Track Club and the Shepard Center has allowed us to compete in the race with bibs for five teams. Just a couple years ago, Brent and I were dubbed as pioneers as the first assisted team to run this race and now thanks to these two organizations we have grown five-fold.

We have a whole weekend of happenings and this is one of our biggest fund raisers of the year. Greg and Christy Smith have graciously opened their home for an evening of fun that will highlight the Peachtree Road Race and The Kyle Pease Foundation. We are so grateful and excited to share the gift of inclusion with some amazing people. Thank you to the Smiths for opening their home to our foundation. 

Join us in our friendly bet where KPF Fans can wager to support their KPF favorite team at our website. This is a fun way to support KPF while cheering for your favorite KPF team.  

The Monday following the race, Brent and Kyle will hit the road for the 70.3 mile Half Ironman in Muncie, IN on Saturday, July 9.

So as stated earlier, it is a busy few weeks.  As always don't forget to apply for the Jake Vincent Family Grant and to sign up for Camp Wheel Away.

And do not forget, Together We Wheel. 

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