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Racing for a cure and to help others

Brett Reichert, an associate director for Clayton State University’s International Student Services, is set to compete, this month, in the “Nations Triathlon.”

The multi-sport event, in Washington D.C., will benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and will take place on the tenth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, on Washington, and New York City.

Reichert said this will be his second major endurance event, as part of his efforts to raise funds to fight blood cancer. So far, he added, he has been able to raise more than $7,000.

“After my first Team in Training triathlon on May 15, which raised $5,017, I took a few weeks off,” said Reichert. That time off was short-lived, however, after Reichert received a letter about a young girl who had been diagnosed with cancer.

“I got a note from a blood cancer, delivered through the eyes of a young, brave girl from my hometown [Thomasville, Ga.],” he said. Her name was Julia Johnson, he said. She was 10, and had been was diagnosed, on Mar. 9, 2009, with acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.

“[She] has been in treatment for two years, with monthly trips to Egleston Hospital in Atlanta,” said Reichert. “Her final chemo was administered July 20. Hang tough, Julia!” he said, with a voice filled with excitement.

Anyone who wants to honor a fallen veteran, or cancer victim, said Reichert, is encouraged to send him the names of the persons they wish to honor. He said he will write the names on a sash, in indelible ink, and wear it along the 5K bike and run portions of his upcoming race.

For more information about the race, and how to submit the names, go to: www.tinyurl.com/breichert.