On November 12th, 2011, a brave two year-old boy, Wade DeBruin, lost his battle with the little know pediatric cancer, Neuroblastoma. Little is known about this disease except the heartbreaking number of children and families that are affected each year. Neuroblastoma is the leading pediatric cancer in the United States, and is responsible for nearly 650 cases a year in the United States. Nearly half of these children younger than 2 year-old Wade. On November 12,2012, Power Athlete nation banned together for the first time to honor brave Wade and spread the awareness of Neuroblastoma on Wade’s Day.
2013 marked the second year Power Athlete has run the Wade’s Army campaign, and brought in an astounding $50,000 from over 1000 donors in only 3 months! Wade’s Army was also able to recruit 91 individuals from all over the world to fund raise for the Wade’s Wings Foundation. Seventeen teams were formed among those 91 making the biggest impact and exhibiting the strength of the Power Athlete community. Through these team’s fundraising efforts, as well as gyms who opened their doors to host their own fundraisers for ‘Wade’, we were able to create a standing awareness for Neuroblastoma. We have had countless pictures submitted from Wade’s Day complete with athletes decked out in the Wade’s Army uniform.
Power Athlete would like to thank all of the sponsors, donors, fundraisers, and those that participated in Wade’s Day this year. Our sponsors included WJ Bradley, Well Food Company, Corrigan and Welbourn ALCP, Sling Shot Multipurpose Wraps, and Onnit. We have received many votes of confidence and support through emails or meeting with participants on our travels for the fight against Neuroblastoma. None of this could have been possible without the each and every member of Power Athlete nation and their generous contributions.
Two examples of Power Athlete Nation’s generosity were from our top individual fundraiser and top fundraising team. Will Jones rallied around his nephew who had succumbed to his own battle with pediatric cancer. Will brought his family and friends together to honor Wade’s Day in their garage gym and fundraised over $3,000. In addition, Coaches at CrossFit Syndicate in Columbia, Maryland promised to do a burpee for every dollar raised. 5,327 burpees later, they still were feeling great about their accomplishment of finishing as top fundraising team.
As Wade’s Army continues to grow in size, so does Wade DeBruin’s reminder of just how precious life is. Sadly, the number of children and families that bravely combat Neuroblastoma continues to grow each year. With limited knowledge about this disease and too few treatment facilities in the United States, many families are forced to relocate from their homes and move out of state in order to seek treatment.
2014 will be a year of growth and outreach for Wade’s Army. We have officially become a recognized non-profit organization, 501(c)3, which will allow for more sponsorship, an extended campaign, and allow each company and individual to receive a tax refund for their contribution. Wade’s Army will be expanding our mission to not only spread the awareness of Neuroblastoma and campaign for Neuroblastoma research, but also do whatever we can to help support these families in their time of need. We will also be teaming up with the Power Athlete Team Series. Wade’s Army’s 2014 donation page is now live, here, and if you are interesting in becoming a sponsor please email us at email@example.com!
Again, thank you Power Athlete Nation! None of this would have been possible without you!
John Welbourn is CEO of Power Athlete and Fuse Move. He is also creator of the online training phenomena, Johnnie WOD. He is a 9 year veteran of the NFL. John was drafted with the 97th pick in 1999 NFL Draft and went on to be a starter for the Philadelphia Eagles from 1999-2003, appearing in 3 NFC Championship games, and for starter for the Kansas City Chiefs from 2004-2007. In 2008, he played with the New England Patriots until an injury ended his season early with him retiring in 2009. Over the course of his career, John has started over 100 games and has 10 play-off appearances. He was a four year lettermen while playing football at the University of California at Berkeley. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in Rhetoric in 1998. John has worked with the MLB, NFL, NHL, Olympic athletes and Military. He travels the world lecturing on performance and nutrition for Power Athlete. You can catch up with John as his personal blog on training, food and life, Talk To Me Johnnie and at Power Athlete.
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