We are back!

OrthoCarolina Classic 10K – Charlotte, NC

Watch my video: R4P on the move

3 months. 3 months is the amount of time Run4Papa (R4P) took off after a magnificent year of raising funds and awareness for Primary Progressive Aphasia (PPA). We had time to relax, recover and rejuvenate after completing the Great Wall of China Marathon back in May.

And yesterday, R4P started back in our hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina by running the OrthoCarolina Classic 10K – a premier 10K running event. The days events are designed to promote and encourage active families and healthy lifestyles. The course offers a beautiful yet challenging route passing the major medical facilities in Charlotte along with a great view of the Charlotte skyline–while raising awareness for several local charities and community organizations.

As always, no matter the race, my nerves get the best of me before I cross the starting line. My palms become sweaty, my heart races like a canoe heading toward a waterfall with no paddle aboard, and my mind plays tricks like Chris Angel performing street magic on the Las Vegas strip.

And then? I cross I cross the starting line; not a care in the world as I run for the cause. A 10K (6.2 mile) race seems like nothing in comparison to the Great Wall of China Marathon, but what a difference a 3-month hiatus can make to a runner.

I found myself stopping to capture more pictures and video than normal, a clear sign I had regressed from the days of running up and down 5,162 steps on the Great Wall. I had people stopping me along the race (thank you for that brief reprieve) curious why I was filming, what PPA stood for, and even a gentlemen who wanted to capture R4P on his ipad.

I have no problem sacrificing time in a race to create more exposure for PPA and to help educate people about this vicious disease. In fact, 99% of people today have NEVER heard of PPA. That is one of several major goals that R4P will be aspiring to change in the upcoming year.

Crossing the finish line at 1:01:25-finally an odd number versus my bib # of 842-reinforced several important points. While my time was a relatively slow 9:53/mile pace, people supporting this race also were greatly interested in learning more about PPA. Running up and down the roads in Charlotte not only reinvigorated my love of running races, but also fired up an intensity to do bigger and better things moving forward.

Of course, you know you are in Charlotte when you finish a 10K race and beer is on the house! To wrap-up the wonderful event hosted by OrthoCarolina, there was a Kids 50 yard dash! The kids lined up, waited their turn, and sprinted toward their finish line. The joy in their faces is what life and running should be all about: healthy living and fun.

In the upcoming months, we will be launching an unprecedented campaign that has never attempted before in the field of PPA research.

Thank you for your patience and continued support of R4P.

1,000+ people donate to R4P

Thank you!!!

We want to extend a special thank you to each and everyone who chose to support the R4P campaign this year. It takes a lot of people to make such a wonderful campaign come together, and we are so very appreciative of your generosity. To all the supporters below, THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts and our PAPA!


Jason F. Boschan

 2012 Run4Papa Donors

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My Great Wall of China Marathon Run

The World’s Toughest Marathon

A journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step


315 days ago, I was staring at a screen with a only 12 characters: Run4Papa.com

Below the title? A flashing cursor and a blank screen. Fast forward to today – May 19th, 2012. I was 4 hours away from tackling the Great Wall of China Marathon and I couldn’t have been more prepared.

As my alarm went off at 3:33 AM, I lay sitting in my bed staring at the ceiling. All I could think about was in 12 hours time, I would be crossing the finish line. Was there any doubt? Not at that moment in time and since our bus was leaving at 4 AM, I hopped into the shower, put on my running gear and headed down to grab a quick breakfast.

Our running group walked out to the bus as we began our 2 hour ride to Huangyaguan, site of the Great Wall of China marathon. I tried my hardest to close my eyes and sleep but I couldn’t fool myself. I was amp’d. My adrenaline was pumping and despite my best efforts, I figured I might as well embrace these emotions than curb them. Around 5 AM, I woke my sister up and asked her to film some pre-race commentary on the bus. I spoke quietly so as not to wake the other runners who somehow were immersed in deep R.E.M. sleep patterns.

As we approached the entrance to the Great Wall, the sun was hanging high above the horizon. I glanced at my phone. 6AM. 1 hour and 40 minutes to go before our corral was to be released. Our group made our way to Ying Yang Square-the central site for spectators as well as the start/finish line-where many a picture was taken along with some extra footage for THE CAUSE. Per my usual routine, I wrote “PPA” (Primary Progressive Aphasia) on the back of my left hand and “PAPA” on the right while on my palms I had “CNADC” (Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Disease Center). After a couple more pictures, some video and hugs from my parents and sister, I was ready to begin one of the most amazing races of my life.

At approximately 7:40AM, the gun fired and our corral ran into the open terrain. I jogged out of Ying Yang Square and began running through the streets for about .3 miles before reaching the 3-mile hill leading to the beginning steps of the Great Wall. During Miles 1-3, I had to keep a very steady and slow pace. Two days before on inspection day, we had been driven up this mountain for our “walk-through” and I knew how intense this initial incline would be on my body. Running side-by-side my friend Adam, I kept glancing over and gesturing to see if we were keeping a steady pace. He responded with a thumbs up as he was listening to music. The temperature felt somewhat mild, maybe a cool 75 degrees, but of course it was only 8 AM and we were only several miles in.

Upon reaching the top of the mountain, we marched roughly 150 steps leading us to the beginning of the Great Wall of China. Step 1. “I am on the Great Wall of China, running the World’s Toughest Marathon. 5,163 steps to go. Focus.” The view and scenery were absolutely breathtaking as we climbed step after step-each easily equivalent to 2-3 steps in an office building stairwell-up and down various inclines/declines along this magnificent ‘Wonder of the World.’

At Mile 4, there was a massive logjam due to a narrow walkway on the wall. We waited 25 minutes and while not ideal, this time gave us a chance to catch our breath. I decided to stop briefly and kiss the wall figuring good  karma couldn’t hurt the effort today. The temperature was quickly rising as we ran our way to the end of the wall and started making our descent. This 3/4 mile stretch lead us down more steps, an uneven uneven hiking path, and of course more steps. After the last step, we finally made our way onto a level part of the Great Wall bypassing Mile 5 and bringing us back into Ying Yang Square. Watching my family jumping up and down was a massive boost of adrenaline. I ran up to them and started going bonkers yelling “Let’s go! Let’s Go! It’s the Great Wall of China Marathon…who’s fired up?”

Miles 6-9 took us back through the streets of Huangyaguan where cars passed us on both sides, locals lined the streets to support the runners, and little kids  happily extended their hands for High 5’s while some even ran side-by-side us for short stretches. Water consumption and proper hydration was essential; there was at least one water bottle in my hand at all times. If you waited until you were thirsty, it would be way too late. On top of that, I was constantly stopping to take pictures and capture film footage. This stopping and starting was taking a toll on my body; however, it was a conscious decision to soak-in this once-in-a-lifetime experience and put in a little extra effort.

Crossing mile marker 10, we continued running toward the farmlands. This terrain rotated from dirt roads to paved paths back to dirt roads while weaving up and down a bunch of obscenely tough hills. At mile 12, the half marathoners veered left while and the full marathoners continued on passing farm after farm and wildlife after wildlife. Besides the increasing temperature, the changes in terrain were challenging to say the least.

I glanced up briefly to see mile marker 13 juxtaposed aside a seemingly never-ending hill. I motioned to Adam and said, “I think we should walk this one and save the energy. We can make up the time on the way down.” In a marathon like this, you really have to be strategic and pick moments to push yourself while knowing when to relax and recover. And boy, did we make the right decision. While speed-walking up the mountain, we saw people who had started running initially but quickly slowed down to a complete stop and were breathing heavily. Halfway up the hill, there was a beautiful lake over-looking the mountain that screamed “Stop and enjoy the view!” And of course, that is what we did.

Reaching the peak of this hill was a massive relief. Miles 14-16 wrapped us down and around a winding area showcasing spectacular views. We were hydrating plenty, taking in a Goo packet every hour or so as well as a Starburst (for sugar purposes) to keep our bodies’ functioning at safe levels. Running in between little villages on side streets and up another steep incline, we saw a lady laying against a wall looking extremely dehydrated. We stopped to ask her if she was OK or needed any help. She replied, “Someone already went to get help. I am OK. I just can’t go on any further.” That utter look of exhaustion was one that we would see time and time again from runners.

As we pushed past Mile 17, there was a runner who decided enough was enough and took off their racing bib leaving it behind on a rock. The further we got into the race, the more and more people were dropping out due to physical exhaustion, dehydration and mental fatigue.

Mile 18 was memorable for two reasons. Earlier in the trip, my mother had been worrying and telling the ENTIRE running group that I had a tendency to cramp in marathons, specifically at Mile 18. Although this was an accurate statement of the facts, I told her to stop worrying but that isn’t exactly in my mother’s DNA. It’s like asking a pediatrician to stop caring for children, that would just never happen. So predictably, at Mile 18 a) My calves started cramping b) the terrain in front of us looked nothing like a marathon route. The path was an uneven and rocky trail in the middle of the farmlands. I dropped down to the ground as Adam stretched my calves reducing the cramps (for now). 8.2 more miles…no problem. After all, I was here to Run4Papa and nothing was going to stop me!

Mile 19: The cramps returned: BIGTIME! In my precious camel-pack that I carried everywhere on this trip and during the race-my running group appropriately labeled me “DORA The Explorer“-was a bar of soap my mother gave me before the race. She read online that rubbing soap along the area where cramps occur relieves the lactic acid and helps reduce/eliminate cramps in that specific area. Being skeptical and cynical was an understatement, but I figured there would be no harm in bringing a bar of soap from the hotel. I dropped to the ground, pulled out the bar of soap, rubbed my calves and…and…AND my cramps went away! I couldn’t believe it!

Looping back down the main road and into Ying Yang Square, I told Adam NOT to tell my family about the cramps. There was no sense in them worrying plus we only had 5.2 miles left to go. In the square, we reached Mile 21 in 5 hours and 30 minutes into the race. I recall my family being excited but I could barely summon enough energy besides a wry smile. I believe my dad said “Danielle is waiting on the wall for you guys.” Danielle, a member of our running group, mentioned she was going to try and run the last 5 miles with us to help for the final push. She ran the half marathon earlier and as we hiked up 15 steps onto the lower level of the Great Wall, she was waiting for us. She was essential on so many levels. We gave her a hug and Adam said “You have no idea how happy we are to see you!” Fact and fact.

We passed the final checkpoint/cut-off at 5 hours, 33 minutes-if you didn’t make this in 6 hours, you could not continue-and received our pink wristbands allowing us to attack the Great Wall yet again. 5 miles between us and the finish line.: just 5 measly miles. With 2 1/2 hours remaining, we thought the hike up the Great Wall would be a comfortable break between running through the farmlands. We thought wrongly.

In front of us was a mere 500 steps, followed by an uneven inclined trail path, and then 100 more steps. At the end of this 3/4 mile hike was the top of the Great Wall. After taking 5 steps, I was winded. I couldn’t believe it. I turned around and my friend Adam was hunched over a couple steps below. Looking up the steps, there were runners everywhere leaning against the wall or sitting down head slouched between their legs. Never before was I intimidated with this race until that very moment. We had so far to climb before actually reaching the wall. 20 steps in front of us, a fellow group runner named Chad, a marine, was sitting down with his head between his legs. I asked him, “Chad are you OK? Want some water? You got to keep moving.” He said nothing. I later found out that step would be his last as he was escorted down due to exhaustion.

Danielle was carrying my backpack, while Lyssette, another group runner and I, were hiking up the mountain downing our water quicker than inhaling fresh air. Between her and I, we were down to half a bottle; we were only halfway up. There were no water stations until the top and I was growing increasingly scared we were going to become dehydrated. Lyssette, who was speaking in English the entire race, starting mumbling something in Spanish to me. Our water was now extinct and we were struggling up this path. For some unknown and fortunate reason, a local was headed down the mountain carrying a full case of water on his left shoulder and another full case on his right. Lifesaver, literally. We grabbed two bottles for each of us as we eventually made it up the path and onto the Great Wall. I had to sit down.

In the distance, all I could hear were screams from people cramping up. I saw some runners being carried away in stretchers and there were race officials stopping people if they thought they could no longer continue. It was great to sit down. Too good. Lyssette grabbed me by the collar and said, “Stand up now. If you don’t, you may not want to get up again.” Danielle and Adam reached the top a couple minutes later and we were ready to move forward. Not much was said to one another besides “Keep moving.”

At his point in time, no one was running. Sliding past other runners, there was an overwhelming look of fatigue on their faces and no doubt, we had the identical look on ours. Not much was said to fellow runners besides gesturing a thumbs up. After walking down a handful of steps, we looked ahead and saw what could best be described as: Torture. The climb in front of us seemed downright “Unfair.” I think I used that word time and time again. Sometimes out loud and other times more graphic in my own mind. People were literally climbing these stairs on their hands and knees. We slowly climbed this treacherous part of the Great Wall making our way to the top. When we reached the peak, we saw 4 more brutal stretches similar to this one! The 4 of us looked at one another with deflating glances. Like marathons beforehand, it was another challenge and another wall to overcome. Yes, it was insanely tough, but this was what we had journeyed halfway across the globe to conquer! Had we been on our own, I can’t even fathom how we would’ve pushed past these mental and physical walls. I was thankful we were all together helping one another through this stretch.

Peak after peak, step after step, water bottle after water bottle. I kept asking “Are we good one time?” The answer was the same each time: “Yes!” The only thing that made sense was putting one leg in front of the other. Stopping was not a smart idea, unless it was in a small corner of shade or in-between a tunnel before the next peak. 3 steps away from the second to last peak, my right calf cramped up worse than I have ever experienced in my lifetime. I couldn’t move my leg and immediately sat down on the wall internally writhing in pain. A race official quickly approached me and said, “Mate, do you need help off this wall? We can go grab someone.” I looked him square in the eye-despite me thinking my calf was going to physically explode-and said “No chance. This is just a cramp and as soon as my friend Danielle rubs soap on my calf, I will be fine. The only way I am getting off and down this wall is on my own two feet!” The cramp was so painful that I asked Danielle to reach into my DORA backpack, grab the soap and rub it on my calf for about a minute. I knew if this didn’t go away, finishing this race would’ve been in serious jeopardy. The race official was intently examining this process and I was nervous to stand up and walk. Regardless, I was going to tell the official my leg was fine, but if the cramp didn’t go away, I don’t know how I would’ve faked it. Somehow, someway, the damn soap worked again! Thanks Mom!

We hit the midway point of the last peak. To make matters more interesting, the same cramp happened to my left leg! Again, Danielle grabbed the soap and proceeded to rub it against my calf. At that point in time, she said “We are OK on time, buuuuuut we need to run down the last 3 miles of the hill.” I stood up and decided that would be the final time I would stop and sit down for any cramps. We completed the final peak and descended several hundred stairs.

We were off the wall.

All that remained was the original 5K incline hill to start the race except this time, the last 3 miles would be straight down. Cue bright lights and smile. I started speed walking for a couple minutes and finally said to Danielle “Let’s Go, you are slowing me down!” Even in adverse conditions, sarcasm is always an outlet that helps motivate my inner core. I started jogging, then sprinting figuring at any point the cramps could and would return. The more I ran downhill, the closer I would be to the finish-line. At points, I would pull up and speed walk to catch my breath and avoid serious “cramp-age.”

During this 3-mile run I couldn’t help but get emotional. I was thinking about my Papa. I remembered walking back to my brother’s apartment in Manhattan after running the 2010 NYC Marathon and listening to him tell me about a marathon on the Great Wall. I certainly thought about my 1st ever post on the website. I was thinking of all the families who I met in-person and online through this cause battling PPA. I recalled meeting the CNADC staff and medical team who agreed to partner with me for this cause. I laughed about running side-by-side Bill Rodgers in Chicago, buying trail shoes for my  first 10K trail race at the White Water Center, capturing pictures for an impromptu run in Tampa along The World’s Longest Continuous Sidewalk and scheduling meeting after meeting for potential sponsors. I thought about overcoming obstacle after obstacle in the mud at the Warrior Dash, running End-to-End in the sandbar in Michigan, jogging along the Sunset Cliffs in San Diego, and writing article after article for the website. I would never forget speaking at the unbelievable Reunite with Dr. Heyman – Support the Climb of 5,164 Steps fundraiser in Michigan in front of family and friends-surpassing $20,000 in 100 days and raising the goal to $50,000. I thought about waking up early in NYC and taking my sisters advice about running on the trendy High Line in Manhattan and being mistaken for being Justin Verlander. I remembered jet setting to the Mile High City like madmen preparing for the Gorilla Run 5K running wild through downtown Denver “Tebowing” left and right as well as training in altitude up the steps at the Red Rock Canyon Amphitheater. I thought about responding daily to emails, FB posts, tweets and phone calls about the campaign. I smiled thinking about writing, filming and directing What would you do for THE CAUSE? That was made in 2 days! I shuddered at taking an ice bath after the Thunder Road Half Marathon. I was proud to have orchestrated having Papa coming out to flip the coin for our Annual Turkey Bowl V Thanksgiving football game as both teams came together to support this cause (of course winning the game was extra special). I thought about sacrificing night after night of a social life because nothing was going to be posted until it had thoroughly been reviewed; I was determined to create original, provocative content whether the ideas succeeded or not. I thought about circling the Jackie Onassis Reservoir in the freezing cold while my brother graciously took pictures and filmed footage. I thought about Hustling up the Hancock Building (94 flights in 21 minutes) along with hosting the CNADC fundraiser (one of the best nights of my lifetime). I loved the idea of finding inspirational quotes 75 days and counting out from the Great Wall of China Marathon. I thought about flying to the Nation’s Capitol for my first Rock ‘N Roll Half Marathon. I appreciated being invited to attend the Annual PPA Conference and being part of the World’s Largest 8K run where I filmed live footage of the race using my GoPro camera for the first time. I thought about how I booked a trip to The Lone Star and ended up running the Big D Half Marathon in the pouring rain. I picked up my pace thinking back to the ‘In Honor Of’ T-shirt idea for families battling PPA to feel more a part of this cause. I thought about being stuck at $45,000 two weeks out from Beijing and brainstorming with my friend Roni about the 5K for $5K Challenge that captivated people like no other and got us over the hump of $50,000! Traveling and training in 9 states and logging over 500+ miles in water and on land seems unimaginable in hindsight. Endless amount of time, sweat, creative ideas-some working, some not so much-and a tremendous support system from so many people across the globe all culminating right at this moment in time…

And just like that, we were .3 miles away from finishing this remarkable journey! It was mind-boggling to imagine 315 short days ago, I was staring at that flashing cursor. I remember my Papa saying at the fundraiser 6 months back, “I hope your legs and heart are strong.” I replied, ‘Strong enough to carry you, me and all our supporters on my backside for 26.2!” His lasting smile is one I will have etched into my memory for a lifetime.

Rounding the corner, I put on my GoPro camera, loudly ‘encouraged’ Danielle to run between Adam and I as we ran into Ying Yang Square to a huge applause. My mom was elevating as if she could slam dunk a basketball, my father had a smile from ear-to-ear and my sister was screaming like a mad woman. Hand-in-hand, Adam, Danielle and I crossed the finish line at: 7 hours, 30 minutes and 52 seconds.

From what I can recall, there was A LOT of hugging, high 5’s, screaming, relief and sheer satisfaction. I was so proud and honored for my Papa, for all the patients and families battling PPA, for the CNADC, for the sponsors, and of course for our family, friends, and supporters across the globe for believing that ‘an average person could do extraordinary things.

I wanted to desperately get a massage, but went to my sister after about 50 pictures were taken and said, “We need to go back on the wall to do post-race commentary. If I don’t do it now, I will be too exhausted when the adrenaline wears off.” We walked up about 150 steps and I let the emotion pour out.

Mission Accomplished! Only 570 people finished the marathon and I am proud to say this journey and challenge have been successfully created, achieved and finally completed. It’s hard to imagine this Run4Papa campaign being over.

At least, for now…


Jason F. Boschan – Great Wall of China Marathoner

To make a donation click: PPA Research and Education Fund (Run4Papa)

To see more photos, go to: My Great Wall of China Run

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Inspection Day

The Long Road Ahead – 2 days before race day

Inspection Day? Never heard of an inspection 2 days before any race in the past, but fortunately, and I do mean FORTUNATELY, this was an essential part of the Great Wall of China Marathon experience.

Staying at the Capitol Hotel in Beijing, our running group had a 2-hour bus trip out to the Great Wall. What is inspection day exactly? While not mandatory, inspection day allows runners, family, and friends the ability to do a “walk-through” on the Great Wall of China that mirrors the marathon route.

Heading into inspection day, I was pretty opposed to this idea. Why? For every race I have run in the past, I purposely never looked at the route in advance, ever. I never had to contemplate what was around the corner because I never knew. I thrived on everything being fresh.That worked in the past, and if you know me at all by now, I am extremely superstitious and OCD about my pre, during and post race routines.

I couldn’t of been more wrong in my assessment today.

First of all, I felt so privileged to have my parents and little sister for this ‘walk-through‘ on the Great Wall. We had the opportunity to go at our own pace, stopping for pictures throughout the trek and soaking in the fact we were walking along the Great Wall of China! These were priceless memories and made the entire day that much more worthwhile…

My father said “I never thought I would see the Great Wall of China in my lifetime. It was never on our radar before, but thanks to you, we are here today.” I wanted to say 313 days ago, it wasn’t on my radar either, but a lot has transpired over that time and standing side-by-side my father is a memory I will cherish forever.

As we continued walking along the wall, I realized how important and advantageous this ‘walk-through‘ would ultimately be in respect to visualization. Although we were going at a snails pace (intentionally), I was processing the insane inclines and declines of this wall, and mentally preparing for the marathon much more effectively. This seemed to alleviate some of my initial fears and I envisioned the runs on the wall being ‘a nice break‘ in between running through the farmlands through god-know-what type of terrain (cue foreshadow).

Of course, the race was only 2 days away! Although walking and talking with my family on the Great Wall was a surreal experience that will last a lifetime, you better believe I was soaking up every step, crevice, loose rock, railing, lack there of railing, water station, spots of shade and any other detail you can imagine.

After walking off the wall, I noticed a good amount of people registered for the Full Marathon were switching to the Half. Upon asking one runner from the United States why he switched, he said “Simple. I didn’t think running the FULL would’ve been a problem. I trained more for this race than any other before. The second I stepped on the wall and looked ahead, I realized I made an massive error in judgement! I came here to enjoy this race and I want to make sure I have plenty of time to finish.” Despite the 8-hour time limit, he was not alone as several hundred people followed suit.

Although inspection day is optional, in my opinion, this should be mandatory! Runners should only be given their race chip if they participate in the ‘walk-through.’ Look no further than all the runners that  decided to scale down from the full to the half marathon.

In two more days, I would realize why people call this race “The World’s Toughest Marathon!

In the meantime, I figured I would just hang out with my little sister and take in the view!

To see more photos, go to: Inspection Day Walk-Through

We reached our goal of $50,000!

$50,000 Donated to the Cause – Thank You!

Papa and all his grandchildren + great grandchild!

Papa and all his grandchildren + great grandchild!

With great respect, humility and support, I am pleased to announce Run4Papa has OFFICIALLY reached the $50,000 goal toward PPA research! IN FACT, we are currently at $51,619 and rising!!!

I cannot thank you enough for ALL your help along this remarkable journey! This has been an overwhelming experience and I feel so proud and honored to have people who believed in this idea from the beginning and continued to spread the word over the past 300+ days. THE CAUSE has impacted countless people, patients and families in such a positive fashion. Papa’s desire to care for children for 50 years as a pediatrician coupled with his love of life is as much inspiration as anyone would ever want or need.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart and our entire family…

Next stop? Great Wall of China Marathon!


Have a good story to share about Dr. Louis “Papa” Heyman?

Want to say something directly to “Papa”?

Please feel free to share any thoughts, feelings or memories that come to mind by writing: [email protected]

“CONGRATULATIONS again! This video montage is so powerful it took my breath away! Your vision, preparedness, and follow-through were remarkable and so inspirational. You are truly an amazing person (and talented at fundraising!), and you and your family should be so proud of your hard work and devotion to this cause and resulting major accomplishment. It’s clear that so many people grew in many ways from all of your efforts, and of course P.P.A. is so lucky to have such a dedicated champion. Kudos, and we can’t wait to see what’s next!” – Margot Shapiro, Newport Beach, CA

“GREAT video, Jason. Congrats to you for your ambitious “Journey” and reaching your goal, both in the funds raised and the completion of the Great Wall Marathon. You make me proud!” -Dr. Jay Staub, Dallas, TX

“Having walked a portion of The Great Wall, we can appreciate the degree of difficulty negotiating those steep inclines. Congratulations on your successful marathon, but it was even more than just running a great distance, rather a test of commitment to a worthy and noble cause.Thanks for the wonderful video of your journey because it’s a journey we all accompanied you on in spirit. Your Papa is a very fortunate man to have a grandson as dedicated as you, who through his unfortunate illness have been able to focus the light on a horrible disease requiring more money for research to find a cure. Unfortunately, it may not come in his life time, but you, through the support you’ve been able to garner have helped to shorten that time. Once again, congratulations on a job well done.” -Rose and Harry Sultz, Ontario, Toronto

“Watching the video. OMG Jason. I laughed, I cried but mostly I kept thinking about your accomplishments. You are amazing. I am speechless.” -Carolyn Lanyi, Commerce Township, MI

“It has been a pleasure to meet and work with you. Who ever knew how far this would go when you started out? I have been happy to be a part of this journey and think you are a fantastic person. You had the energy to keep things going and your tremendous work ethic has paid off. This is an unbelievable accomplishment. Who is crazy enough to go out and say they will raise $50k for a dementia that 99% of people have never heard off. I can probably say that no one in the world has done so much to bring awareness to PPA research as you have done in the last 5 months. Your grandfather must be incredibly proud. It brings a smile to my face and make me think of my grandfather who I had an incredible relationship with. Thanks again for taking us on this journey with you.” -Kevin Connolly, Chicago, IL

“Your race was a gift to others; incredibly tough which must make it so much more meaningful. You ran GREAT!” 4-time NYC and Boston Marathon Winner Bill Rodgers, Boston, MA

“I finally had down time to watch the incredible videos!!! I’ve watched them 3 times. Just wonderful. What an accomplishment. SOOOOOOOOOOO GLAD we were there with you. May this be one of many remarkable journeys that you will navigate in your future as you clearly have all the potential in the world! I am beyond proud, as that race was beyond brutal. The money you raised for PPA beyond remarkable! All good things to follow. You have earned it and well deserve it. Love you so much and can’t wait to share the next adventure. You keep me young! All my love always…Mom” -Shelley Boschan, Bloomfield Hills, MI (#1 supporter)

“I once read in a magazine that the average number of strides that it takes to complete a marathon is between 52,800 and 55,000! Think about it, at just over 90 cents a stride that is one hell of a lot of work! You should feel very proud as most of the people you will know during your lifetime will never put themselves out for a worthy cause the way that you have already demonstrated that you are willing to! What an outstanding accomplishment!!!” -Maury Feuerman, West Bloomfield, MI

“Your video is AMAZING Jason! It almost felt like we were there with you! Such an incredible journey, and I truly appreciate your sharing it with me. Loved your background music! Who would think Drowning Pool and the Great Wall of China would ever meet each other? Keep up the great work!” -Sandi Constantino-Thompson, Charlotte, NC

Way to go Jason…you conquered an unbelievable challenge! When I went to China many years ago, I climbed a small portion of the Great Wall; I remember how uneven and difficult it was just to WALK those steps. You should be very proud for what you’ve done in your Papa’s honor, and I applaud you! -Joy Gorback, San Diego, CA

“Congratulations Jason! That is truly an incredible accomplishment in honor of Papa. I am full of pride right now!” Jonathan Boschan, Los Angeles, CA

“”LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!!! So happy for you, proud of you, and inspired by you! You got me choked up! The video was daunting enough just looking at those steps- I cannot imagine doing it! We should put a team together and do a local half marathon/marathon that we can direct contributions to your cause sometime this year or next!” -Christy Churchill Magas, Charlotte, NC

“SO PROUD OF YOU! You set out to do something most people only dream about and you made it a reality. You put so much hard work and dedication Into this and I am truly amazed by you! SO, SO proud! Now take a rest, you deserve it!” Wendy Moss, West Bloomfield, MI

“I felt chills, butterflies, the same adrenaline from that day, tears started coming down…amazing video!!! You did it!! We did it!! Soooo proud of you and all that you’ve done for this cause, for your PAPA! You are awesome! Can’t wait to see what’s next!” -Lyssette Barbosa, San Diego, CA, Great Wall of China Marathoner 2012

“Mazel Tov on this amazing accomplishment! I’m speechless and truly impressed with your determination, devotion and emotional fortitude! There are so few people who can move mountains and change the landscape – you are one of those remarkable human beings who have taught us all what it means to rise to the occasion. Thank you for your many gifts! Please tell Papa we will all continue the fight and work hard to make sure that PPA, FTD and Alzheimer’s disease are conditions of the past! With deep appreciation and admiration…” -Melissa Kahn, Chicago, Illinois

“Congrats congrats congrats congrats! I read your incredible story over lunch today. I’m so proud of you and wanted to drop you a quick line to say how inspiring you are! What a fantastic cause sand o well executed. Your story is extremely well written and evokes visualizations so well that I feel as though I were there with you. You should write a book on this journey if you have not started already and be on all the talk show circuits!” -Kristin Lusn, Royal Oak, Michigan

“I don’t know how you did it, but the whole thing is just an amazing accomplishment. Couldn’t be more grateful for what you’ve done for this worthy cause and for your grandfather. You seem to have a gift for this kind of thing. It is wonderful that someone with your talent and determination is trying not just to help Papa, but the elderly in general. Thank you for having such a big heart.” -Rex Lanyi, Commerce Township, MI

“All I can say is WOW!! Loved looking at all the pics and reading your commentary. You are truly amazing, inspirational, and a fighter! I can’t even imagine doing that, despite the cramps, exhaustion, and dehydration…crazy tale about the soap! That is amazing footage! I felt like I was there! I am chuckling at the “lots of beer” at the end! You are seriously amazing! What a go-getter! I know your Grandfather is beaming:)” -Dorothy Campbell, Tega Cay, South Carolina

“You are an inspiration to many, including myself. Mazel tov on your amazing accomplishments – both by accomplishing a personal goal of conquering the Great Wall and raising funds to support important research. May this be the start of many great things for you!” -Brent Pliskow, Berkley, Michigan

“Well done Jason, a masterclass in what can be achieved when you put your mind and body into doing something! Your papa must be so proud.” -Nicola Comerford, Wellington, New Zealand

“Just got the wonderful news and had to congratulate you on your amazing efforts. What you have done is truly remarkable and inspiring! I want to wish you the best in your journey to China and the race and expect to hear about your experience when you return. As a board member of CNADC I want to thank you for all you’ve done to help us and so many families impacted by PPA.” -Melissa Kahn, Chicago, IL

“Jason, you have done an amazing job of raising awareness of PPA to countless individuals around the country! Now you can relax and enjoy the run!” -Barbara Monroe, Chicago, IL

“Congratulations, and THANK YOU from those of us who are working towards helping those affected by PPA. Your work matters in a big way, and is inspiring on so many levels. Good luck running the marathon. We’ll be sending you good vibes and lots of energy!” Dr. Jennifer Medina, Chicago, IL

“Jason, you are truly a man of your convictions and the voice for our hopes and dreams to one day find a cure for PPA. BRAVO!” – Linda Hensel,

“Congratulations! Wow! I can’t even imagine how tough this must have been – sounds utterly grueling. So proud to have been a very small part of your “team” with my donation. Only 570 finishers? Amazing. Great job, inspiring story. I only wish I had found your website sooner! So… what’s next?;)” -Karen Fog, London, UK

Your fundraising efforts are amazing. It’s great you’ve reached the $50K mark. That is incredible -Maureen Mizwicki, Chicago, IL

“Mazel Tov! on your marathon and the entire Run4Papa campaign over the last year. It’s been very inspiring to watch you decide to do something big and go out and make it happen.” -Caryn Noveck, Manhattan, New York

“Huge accomplishment! I think you’ve inspired a lot of people with your efforts. You should be very proud of yourself as you know tons if people are proud of you.” -Ryan McCarihan, Charlotte, North Carolina

“Congratulations on your run and your amazing achievement. I know how hard it is to raise money no matter how good the cause and what you did was truly a feat. I’m really proud of you. It’s exciting to watch how passionate you are about the cause and how determined you’ve been. I know good will come from your efforts.” -Laura Noveck, Bloomfield Hills, MI

“Have a safe and enjoyable adventure in China. What an accomplishment! What a tribute! Run Jason Run…” -Rob Pliskow, Huntington Woods, MI

“You are really wonderful and incredible Jason. I have been slowly spreading the word about your website, in hopes of educating others and in raising funds. I took my mom out for dinner last night, and told her the story of what you are doing, including the marathon, which she was very touched by. Then I told her about the t-shirt, and she just smiled soooo big and was beyond touched and thrilled. Now we’re joking that she’ll be in the marathon on the Great Wall. She had been an avid world traveler, so that’s especially meaningful to her. And she loved that you sent your very best to her. Thank you so much for doing something so important and helpful! What great fundraising work you’re doing and the difference it’s apparently making.” -Helen Kasic, Chicago, IL

“It is with much admiration that I send my congratulations and support to you!!! Your remarkable dedication to this cause must make your whole family very proud and I know how deeply grateful everyone at the CNADC is for your tremendous support of PPA research.vI hope that you have an amazing time in China and the experience (one of many!) of a lifetime! With much gratitude…” -Darby Morhardt, Chicago, IL

“If we could only eradicate at least ONE degenerative disease in our lifetime it would be a milestone! But I certainly wish you luck and safe travels/runs on your Papa’s behalf. I’ll be thinking of you week after next!” – Suzanne Tilghman, Waxhaw, NC

“Not only am I very impressed with how you have grown Run4Papa but the actual miles you have run! It’s inspiring to watch someone have a vision and actually execute. Good luck with everything and I look forward to watching Run4Papa continue to grow and succeed.” -Noah Stern, Manhattan, NY

“I think what you’re doing on behalf of “Papa Louie” is amazing and remarkable! I know what you’re doing must be making “Papa Louie” so proud as well! You’ve shown yourself, and everyone else, just a little of what you’re capable of! Good luck with your financial goal, and have fun running the actual marathon!” -Suzy Boschan, West Bloomfield, MI

“I support Jason in his quest to find a cure! Run4papa, Jason!” -Judith Leff, Rossmoor, CA

“Wishing you all the very best for your run Jason. This has been a massive undertaking and you have accomplished so much, I am
confident you will meet your goal. You know I will always have great respect for your grandfather, he is a wonderful man.” -Joan McGirr, Charlotte, NC

“Jason, I am so proud of what you are doing! Keep it up and give your Papa a hug for me:)” -Holly Martinez, San Diego, CA

“Yesterday, this touching video crossed my radar and it reminded me of the ability of a single person with passion to DO SOMETHING life changing. I showed this to the boys and Max shared it with is class. He said he was surprised how it affected them and prompted a lot of conversation. I can only hope that someday my kids will follow in Jason’s footsteps and make a difference.” -Kristin Mapstone, Corrales, New Mexico

“I stumbled across your website and I think what you’re doing is amazing-it’s such a blessing to still have a grandparent in your life! I took care of my Grandmother for about 4 years as she suffered from dementia and pancreatic cancer. It really was an eye opening experience for me and since her passing I’ve been really inspired to learn more about the disease and connect with others who have been affected by dementia/PPA/Alzheimer’s. I’ve been telling my soon to be kindergarteners about Run4Papa and showing them pics of your trip. They think what you’re doing is really cool and one kid said ‘you’re probably super fast and could go to the Olympics!’ It’s important to show people, especially kids, that you can absolutely make a difference int the world. Keep those pics coming.. 🙂 -Holly Minter, Charlotte, North Carolina.” -Holly Minter, Charlotte, North Carolina

“Your papa reminded me of my grandfather and how special a bond we had.  Your grandfather is very lucky to have such a great grandson.  Also just wanted to let you know at the Aphasia Group we went to on Saturday, they played your video and it helped educate over 75 people about PPA.” -Karen Kelly on behalf of Joanne Coggins, Justice for Aphasia, Boston, Massachusetts

“It is touching to see how you care for your family member. Good luck on the Hancock run and even more for the great wall of China. I would like to address you all my best wishes and encouragement for this big endaeavor and both you and your “papa” keep hope that things will get better and we (as researchers) are keeping people like you, stories like you, in our minds daily to remember.” -Pacale Lacor, Chicago, IL

“Jason, I love what you are doing to honor your ‘Papa’ and to bring awareness of and raise money for the research of PPA. It is a terrible disease, robbing my young at heart Mother of so much of her wonderful, social personality. I pray that a cure (or at least treatment) is found soon!” -Musicmama23, Youtube

“Thanks for what you are doing! Greater Awareness for PPA is Key!..my dear wife of 50 years has suffered with it for at least 7 years now. Before my very eyes during this period I have watched an accomplished English Teacher, whose world was words gradually become a virtual mute. “Yes” and “No” comprise the only words she can bring up on her own. The disease affects writing, reading, keyboarding, everything associated with speech… she is down now to just being able to write her name! No meds, no treatment protocol! Really at this point little or no hope. To say it is heartbreaking is an understatement, but maybe the best description we have.” -Larry Entwistle, Colorado Springs, CO

“One man will embark on a mission equivocal to climbing Willis Tower, jogging to the Hancock Building, walking to the top, and then running the 24 miles roundtrip to the University’s Evanston campus, all to support research at Northwestern for primary progressive aphasia, a form of dementia that has stricken his grandfather.” -Northwestern Medicine Newletter, Chicago, IL

“Jason- you are an inspiration! I took a look at your website and thought it was very well done and very moving. Best wishes for blessings and success on your quest.” -Lisa King, Senior VP of Marketing at Raymour and Flanigan, Manhattan, NY

“I watched your video and I am so moved. Not only will I be donating but I would like to ask EVERYONE to pass this on. If we can get it to go viral it will bring SO much attention to this illness. The love really shows – you and your grandfather are so fortunate to have each other!” -Jill Schlan Sider, Chicago, Illinois

“We are very excited about this upcoming event. It is for such a great cause that so many people work hard for every day at Northwestern University. If you don’t know about PPA, this is your chance to learn why it deserves your attention!! Thanks to Jason for all of his efforts in raising awareness and money for this important cause.  See you on Feb 24th!” -Jamie E, Chicago, Illinois, Yelp

“It is so amazing what you are doing to help so many people in need.  We are honored to be friends with such a caring person who could organize something like this.  We are happy to see how much Run4Papa has already raised, and we hope that number increases everyday.  Your grandpa should be proud of what an amazing person you are!  We have truly enjoyed learning about PPA, and we hope, with the effort of you and others like you, that there will one day be a cure for this disease.  Much love and respect!” -Derek and Shana Staub, Dallas, TX

“This site was emailed to my mother just recently from Northwestern in Chicago. My dad, Phil T., age 63, just passed away in early Dec. 2011 from PPA. The person emailing my mother asked her permission to add our dad’s name to your shirt in the Great Wall of China run. She said ok. I read the email, a few tears fell, I watched your “What Would You Do For the Cause” video, & shared it on my fb page along with the “Hustle Up the Hancock” info. Thank you, is all I can say! You will touch so many people by doing this & having this site. I’m positive my dad’s spirit will be there that day in China with you (even though you have no idea who he was), cheering you on, as he loved the outdoors & sports! Good luck to you & may you be watched over from above!” -Noelle Thouvein

“What a wonderful thing to do to support finding a way to preveit is so amazing what you are doing! I know your grandpa is proud and all those who will be helped with your efforts to find a cure PPA. It is a horrible disease, and equally as horrible is that so little is known about it. My mother, a wonderful, loving, caring, talented, educated woman is suffering from this disease…no longer able to speak, write, read and care for herself. Thank you for helping make a difference for your Papa, all PPA patients and those of us who love and care for them. Have a great run!” -Flyingtrikes, YouTube

“I just found your video, website and facebook page. My dad passed away this past Dec. 5th of PPA. He was 63. He was diagnosed in the beginning of 2005 but had symptoms before that. He was a patient at Northwestern, living just over an hour from downtown Chicago. We were just asked if his name could be put on the shirt you’ll be wearing in China and my mom said we would be honored. I am so thankful for what you are doing and am looking forward to following you on facebook.” -Renee Chernick, Bloomington, IL

“What a wonderful thing you are doing for your grandfather. My dear sweet brother in law has PPA and is so young at heart. I cry when I think of what this disease has done to him. He has the biggest heart like I am sure your grandfather has. Thank you for doing what you are doing for all those suffering with PPA.” -Lorigapinski, YouTube

“Your film really was moving! You have the best of both parents in you and I know how proud they (and we all) are of you. We will keep following this journey and cannot wait to see the films from China.” -Sandy and Sheldon Borkin, Boston, Massachusetts

“Proud to support Run4Papa and the great cause. Go get’ em!” -Jordan Sherman, Manhattan, New York

“It is our pleasure to support you on this wonderful adventure!” -Jared Boschan and Shira Goldberg – Manhattan, New York

“Congratulations on this wonderful idea and your dedication towards accomplishing it. We will be following your “journey” and you can count on us to root you on.” -Terry and Howard Tenebaum, West Bloomfield, MI

“I just got you to a even $25,000!!! Hope that helps.” -Logan Abrams, Charlotte, NC

“Happy to help, it’s a most worthy cause. Hope you reach your goal!”  -Otto Kern, West Blomfield, MI

“What a beautiful thing to do for your Papa – very moving. Your efforts will hopefully lead to a cure one day. He has such a kind and gentle expression:)” -FrenchAmGirlies, YouTube

“Congrats on your accomplishments! Keep up the great work…you’ve found your own way to leave a positive “carbon copy” in this world. I admire and respect your ambition to help make a difference for those directly and indirectly affected by PPA. You are awesome! Best of luck in your endeavors in China!  We’ll be thinking of you and wishing you well. Love your friends in San Diego” -Wendie Zepedia, Barbara Paterna, Holly Martinez, Kendra Zamora, Enedina Rangel, San Diego, CA

“WOW! Amazing. Kol haKavod” -Rabbi Paul Yedwab, MI

“I am so impressed by your efforts… your Grandpa is a lovely, lovely man! Hopefully, many others will now get on board to raise money for research!” -Ednasaltz, YouTube

“I have known many afflicted with this illness. Love to help!” -Rabbi Harold S. Loss, MI

“It was really our pleasure to contribute to Jason’s cause” -Shelley and Neil Perl, San Diego, CA

“Much success to find in your run to find a cure for PPA” -Richard and Marilyn Moss, West Bloomfield, MI

“I was thrilled to see the article in the Livonia Observer this past week about Dr. Heyman. You are a very lucky young man, as I know you are aware, to call this darling man your grandfather!  I first met Dr. Heyman in 1994 when I was in search of a pediatrician for my soon to be born baby. I had interviewed a couple of other doctors, without feeling a connection or even any sort of great confidence, and then I met him.  I was so impressed with Dr. Heyman’s ability to make me comfortable as a new mom, his willingness to sit down and just talk to me and not make me feel hurried or pressured. I was immediately at ease and confident and comfortable with him and I knew he was the one to take care of my baby. And take care he did with both of my babies.  He could walk into the room and tell you what was wrong with your child before he even examined them; he would examine them, but he already knew what was wrong! And he would explain to me what needed to be done. Calmly, patiently making sure that I understood. I followed Dr. Heyman from Metro Peds to Brentwood, and then he retired. I miss him and his gentle ways. I don’t know if there has ever been, or will be again, another doctor like Dr. Heyman. Thank you so much for letting me know how he is doing, what he needs in return for all the care that he gave my children, and for that warm fuzzy feeling of knowing that he is so loved by his family.  I wish you a very successful campaign to raise awareness of PPA and a safe trip. Next time you see him, give him a big hug and tell him thank you for me.” -Karen Greenwood, MI

“We are honored to contribute to contribute to this worthy cause” -Steve and Lisa Kaplan, MI

“I just want to write and say your video is amazing! Our center and families affected by PPA are so grateful for all of your work and dedication to the cause.” -Mary O’hara, social worker at the CNADC, Chicago, IL

“Dr. Heyman was my children’s pediatrician. He was always so patient and kind with them. When they were older he told me that he had retaken his pediatric boards and was pleased he passed with flying colors. I will always have a warm spot in my heart for Dr. Heyman.” -Patricia Barnum, Redford, MI

“I loved Jason’s video…heartfelt and touching…we’re rooting for him!” -Enid and Gary Goodman, MI

“This is an awesome journey and quite a tribute to a wonderful, wonderful man!” -Ilene Citrin, Chevy Chase, MD

“Your mission is admirable and inspiring” -Michele Lewis, MI

“Good luck in your venture!” -Cindy and David Pinto, TX

“Best wishes for you in your bid to run the Great Wall of China Marathon! I had a grandparent on each side with Alzheimer’s Disease and my father-in-law. I admire your ambition.” -Ellen Woodward Potts, Tuscaloosa, AL

“We were moved by your love for your grandfather, your family, and by your dedication to the cause of PPA research” -Joseph and Linda LoDuca, Bloomfield Hills, MI

“I really admire what you are doing. There isn’t anything in the world I wouldn’t do for my dad. As a nurse, I know a lot of research is being done around the clock. Good luck with the race, I will be following you!” -Tracey Maken, Fountain Valley, CA

“What a wonderful thing you are doing for your grandfather and for his disease.  As my mother would have said….”you’re such a mensch!” -Debbie Ostrow, San Diego, CA

“I have wonderful memories of your Grandfather’s sweet smile whenever I visited their Livonia office.  What a special guy he is! I am thrilled to donate and look forward to following Jason’s adventure. I think the world of Lou and wish him well.” -Linda Blondy-Glass, West Bloomfield, MI

“Very excited about this inititive. I wish you all the luck and success in your fundraising!” -ilana Gorback, Denver, CO

 “Jason I am so proud of what you are doing for my uncle, your grandfather. You are such an awesome grandson. My father would be so proud of what you are doing for his brother. I am happy to be a part of Run4Papa and I support you all the way!” -Faith Golden, Encinco, CA

“I weep in appreciation of your strength and fortitude in honor of your Papa” -Jo Strausz Rosen, West Bloomfield, MI

“I am sorry to know PPA has happened to your Papa. My memories of him are vivid as an man devoted to his work and his family” -Michele Lewis, Larchmont, NY

“I just read the article in the Farmington Observer about Dr. Heyman. He was my pediatrician for all six of our children. I started with him when he was with Dr. F. Goudie on Seven Mile, then Dr. Blondy, Dr. Schnaar, Dr. Wagenberg. Our children range from 56 to 31…..and now eight grandchildren. They are all well and got a good start in life, thanks to Dr. Heyman…..a real blessing.” -Susan and Richard Latimer, Farmington Hills, MI

“How wonderful is it that you are devoting this time in honor of your grandfather.  It reflects a wonderful soul passed down from generation to generation. Wishing him wellness and serenity. Kol Hakavod Jason. Simply amazing.” -Marcy Borofsky, West Bloomfield, MI

“I suffer from PPA and want to increase awareness of the disability in the UK, where it’s little known. The research will not help me but I hope it will help sufferers in the future. Good luck to your initiative!” -Rita Harris, Oxford, UK

“Many of you know the story of my birth: that I arrived too early, weighed less than 2 lbs and dropped to 21 oz before rallying (stubborn even then, I guess!).  The Lord saved me — but he used the hands, brains and hearts of Dr. Heyman and of his partner, Dr. Blondy to do it. Dr. Heyman has touched SO many lives! Now there’s a chance to reach out to him and his family. I can never repay him for saving me, but here’s a way to support him and his family when they need it most.”  Mary-Therese Courtade, Paw Paw, MI

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