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Man runs 12 marathons in 12 months to cope with loss, help others

By Dave McCann | Posted - Aug 9th, 2013 @ 10:15pm

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SALT LAKE CITY &mdsah; Dealing with the loss of a loved one is a deeply personal and painful experience, and one man decided to run 12 marathons as a way to heal and help others.

Northern California native, Rick Turner, turned to running as way to cope with the grief he experienced when he and his wife Brandi lost a baby. Brandi became very sick during her pregnancy, and they lost their little baby Rome as a result.

"Running just became a real outlet for me," Rick said. "It's as if I get some special time with baby Rome as I'm running. I feel like he's there with me."

Brandi said that she has seen how running has been healing for her husband after their loss.

"As women, we tend to talk to our friends and we cry," Brandi said. "We find that connection with others that I think sometimes men might not have such an easy time doing. I know Rick in particular really needed an outlet for his grief."

Rick is about to run his fifth marathon since the loss of Rome. He created the "Tiny Feet" project as a way to help raise money for other families with babies in intensive care.

"I decided to put together a project where I'm running a marathon for a month for 12 months," he said. "We are raising money to buy gas cards to help with their housing, with food vouchers, you know those costs that are just eating away at you when you really just want to be focused on your baby in NICU."

Rick ran the Deseret News marathon on Friday, and Brandi and their four children were waiting at the finish line to support him.

"Salt Lake is very important to me," Rick said. "I was born here, I have all my family here and what will happen is any proceeds coming from Utah will stay and support families and multiple NICUs here in Utah."

To donate to the "Tiny Feet" foundation and Rick's cause, click here.


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