How an Eagle Mountain man is spreading hope

Ben Lyne, of Eagle Mountain, holds his "I believe in you" sign that he carries while he runs.

Ben Lyne, of Eagle Mountain, holds his "I believe in you" sign that he carries while he runs. (Mitzi Muse)

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EAGLE MOUNTAIN — Do you believe in yourself? If not, one man in Eagle Mountain does, and he has the sign to prove it.

Since February, Ben Lyne has been running the streets of Eagle Mountain and several other neighboring towns while holding a sign with the words, "I believe in you" printed on it, in all caps.

That simple message has been received seemingly countless times by many who have needed it.

Jordan Smith saw the sign on his way to a doctor appointment for some follow-up cancer treatment.

"When I first saw Ben holding up his sign, I was driving to the University of Utah Neurosciences Center," Smith recalled. "I have a long history of health issues from brain cancer, epilepsy, multiple brain surgeries, and so on. ... That day I saw Ben holding his sign up was just what I needed to get through my appointment. It helped me calm my nerves and believe that everything would be OK."

"I might just request Ben to go running the next time I have a check-up MRI at the Huntsman Cancer Center," Smith joked.

Lyne, who has been an avid runner for over a decade, said that he had the thought to run with an encouraging sign for a long time, but kept putting the thought away.

"I started getting this idea a few years back because I would see people driving to school or work while I was out running," Lyne said. "You can kind of see on their faces, and it was kind of how I used to feel when I had to go into the office, and you're just like 'Ughhh, I have to go to work.'

"When I had the thought to do this, it was so out of character and a little intimidating. I would just have these doubts creep in, like 'I'm not an outgoing person,' so I just put the thought away."

Last February, Lyne decided that he was going to put away all his insecurities and just do it. However, Lyne wasn't quite sure what to put on the sign that would have a positive impact on those he would pass.

Why 'I believe in you'

Lyne said he wanted to send a message of inspiration that didn't make people feel uncomfortable or be off-putting.

"I am a big 'Lord of the Rings' and 'Avengers' fan, and I love the scenes when the heroes are charging," Lyne said. "When I see something like that, it makes me think 'I got you. I believe in you. You got this.' That inspires me and gives me motivation. I wanted to spread that message to others."

At first, he wasn't sure if his message was being received. In fact, in the beginning, he spent a lot of painful miles holding the sign above his head, wondering if what he was doing really mattered.

"Running with a sign is actually really hard," Lyne said. "You don't realize how much you use your arms when you run, and when you're running into the wind or up a hill, it's really hard. My first run was actually harder than I thought, and I wasn't sure I would even be able to make it through it."

Not only did Lyne make it through that first run, but he kept going without much feedback from the community.

He doesn't use social media much, and it wasn't until a friend let him know about some posts on the community Facebook page about him, that he knew the impact it actually was making.

Several posts with upwards of 700 likes were made on the community page, with several locals mentioning what an impact the simple words, 'I believe in you' have made in their lives.

Eagle Mountain resident Mitzi Muse said that she had been struggling with some difficult things, and seeing the sign brightened her day.

"I have been dealing with anxiety and I was out taking pictures of birds early in the morning when I saw him jogging toward me with a sign," Muse recalled. "I couldn't wait to see what it was about, and as he got closer I smiled from ear-to-ear seeing what his sign said. It's so wonderful to see that there are still caring, loving people in the world. It made my day."

It isn't just the Eagle Mountain community, and not all of the feedback comes from social media. Lyne recalled a time running through Lehi when a man driving turned around and said that the sign saved his life.

"I had a guy just last Saturday near Macey's in Lehi pull around and stop to talk to me. He said he was thinking about ending his life, and saw me out of the blue and snapped himself out of it," Lyne said. "He was really emotional. The whole rest of the run, I was overcome by that."

'Now I bring the sign wherever I go'

Seeing the impact the sign has made, Lyne said that it has now become a part of him and he wants to spread that message wherever he goes. He also said it has given him new motivation to get out and run even on the days when he may not be motivated to do so.

"I recently went on a business trip to D.C., and then on a trip to Paris, and I brought the sign with me to both places," Lyne said. "Usually, I will just not run on trips, but I want to spread this message to as many people as I can. It's a lot of extra work, but it seems to do a lot of good. Now it's kind of like my thing that I need to do every time. It's given me a lot more meaning out my runs."

Lyne said that while it is neat to see the positive response to his efforts, it was never about him and always about the message.

"The goal isn't to be noticed or to be a local celebrity," Lyne said. "I want it to be about the message, but not about me."

That message will continue to be shared over several miles a week, letting people know someone believes in them, with the hope that they will believe in themselves.


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Arianne Brown has been a contributing writer at for many years with a focus of sharing heartwarming stories.


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