BEND, Ore. (KOIN) — Ultrarunner Mark Stockamp is combining his love for running and passion to help others as he sets out to complete a 100-mile solo race on Saturday to benefit the Cerebral Palsy Foundation.
Cerebral palsy is the most common motor disability in childhood, affecting a person’s ability to move, maintain balance, and posture, according to the CDC.
“It’s the longest run of my life which has me really excited. Training has gone really well, and I’m feeling 100% healthy for this,” 26-year-old Stockamp said. “In my head, I’m saying it’s gonna [take] 20 to 24 hours, so I’m starting at 2:00 AM. I would love to finish ideally before midnight, but if it takes finishing in the early morning of Sunday, so be it.”
Stockamp will hit the trails in Central Oregon, starting his run at the McKenzie River Trail and ending in Black Butte. This is going to be his fourth run for charity. Last year, he ran 65 miles for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and another 40 miles for the local nonprofit Neighbor Impact.
“During the pandemic when all the races were canceled, there were just no races in-person really happening, so I decided to run virtually for fundraisers…it’s been very passionate for me,” Stockamp said.
When the wildfires burned in September 2020, the hazardous air forced us all, including Stockamp, to stay indoors – giving him a new kind of motivation.
“That week spent inside due to hazardous air really just gave me a fresh perspective on running cause it made me think, what if this was my life? What if I could not run at all or go outside and explore all of nature’s beauties that I love so much? And it was all these ‘what-ifs’ that culminated into how can I love & help others who are physically less fortunate?” he said.
Stockamp’s goal is to raise $25,000 for the Cerebral Palsy Foundation. As of Friday morning, he was at just over $17,800.
“I discovered that God’s gift to me is just running these long distances and being able to create a passion to fundraise,” he said. “So, my number one hope is for people to identify the gifts that they have in their life and use it to bless others.”
Stockamp said donations made this weekend will be matched up to $2,000. If you are interested in donating, visit Mark’s GoFundMe page: https://www.gofundme.com/f/marks-100-miler-for-cerebral-palsy