My Fundraising Page

My Fundraising Page
May 10, 2008 by Mandy Sand

Racing to Save Lives

Welcome to Mandy's Team In Training home page.

I'm training to participate in a half marathon in San Antonio as a member of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's (LLS) Team In Training. All of us on Team In Training are raising funds to help stop leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and myeloma from taking more lives. Our team is training in honor of all indivduals who battle blood cancer, but especially for Garrett, a 12yr old boy who has battled Leukemia most of his life . I am also personally running in honor of James Ryan, a little boy I have prayed for who is about 6 months older than my Kylie and was diagnosed last summer with Leukemia. I am currently running 3-4 times a week, between 4 and 7 miles and will be spending some of that time each week in prayer for our team and these 2 young boys. These people are the real heroes on our team, and we need your support to cross the ultimate finish line - a cure!

Please make a donation to support my participation in Team In Training and help advance LLS's mission. All donations are 100% tax-deductible.

I hope you will visit my web site often. Be sure to check back frequently to see my progress. Thanks for your support!

Training Updates:


Last week I had a hard time running as I was in Sacramento California w/family. It was very hot, lots of smoke from the fires, and lots of big hills!

Today, I am back and running w/the team again. We are meeting at 6 a.m. now and that isn't easy for me :-) but it is so worth it! Our mission moment today was from Meredith. She is running in the Nike Marathon in San Diego and this is her story:

My story... my dad died a little over a year ago from Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma, supposedly one of those cancers that is a "better" one to have. Lesser of the two evils, I guess... So, he battled... every day - long and hard until he decided that he had battled enough. He left us on April 13th, a Friday no less (just like my dad) at 2:30 am and it was the most peaceful, wonderful thing that I have ever experienced. I was there to watch him take his last earthly breath, but I knew that he was flying and laughing in Heaven. It was bittersweet and still to this day, I miss him. Every day.

So, I run because that is our connection. When I run, I can still hear his voice and his laugh. I can hear him cheering me on. I joined Team in Training to be a part of something bigger than me. I lost my dad, but that doesn't mean that other daughters have to lose theirs. He battled for his life and I will battle for the lives of others.

Hang in there, be strong and know that this is a GOOD thing that you are doing... not only for yourself physically and mentally, but for people like me directly affected by blood cancers and for those that are battling every day to beat it.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11


Today was hot! I wanted to run 7 miles but only went 6. My daughter Whitley went with me today and rode her bike while I ran. She did great and even carried water for us in her backpack....we really needed it today too! She kept asking "Mom, are you hot...are you tired? You can ride my bike for awhile if you want". It was very cute and I enjoyed having her w/me today. I'm sure we will do it again! The picture above was taken by my husband when we got home today.

Louie's story:

Today I want to share the story of Louie Bonpua. Louie was diagnosed with Chronic Leukemia in 1997. He joined TNT as an Honored Teammate but decided he wanted to do more. He joined the Triathlon team and completed an event, then continued to train for and complete an Ironman. When asked why he was training for a triathlon, Louie said: "Because I want to show people that you can still live, even when they tell you you're going to die." In 2002 Louie was selected to run in the Olympic Torch Relay. At the time he was very sick and had been told he had only days to live, but he fought to get out of the hospital and carry the Olympic torch. The plan was for his friends to push him in a wheelchair, but to everyone's surprise, in spite of his illness and constant pain, Louie walked on his own and carried the torch for the 0.2 miles. Louie died three days later.


Training is going well. I ran 5 miles on Monday and 5 miles on Wednesday. Today I ran 10...yeah! It felt good and bad all at the same time :-) We started at 5:30 a.m. which means Korey kicked me out of bed about 4:45...I'm still having a hard time getting up that early on Saturdays! Recommitment is in 3 days and I still have $600 to raise so I'm looking for all the support I can get. Thanks to all of you who have donated...this wouldn't be possible without your support!


Well I'm missing my runs and my home! My kids and I stayed w/a friend during hurricane Ike b/c my husband was out of town. We are all safe and my house is fine although many of my neighbors weren't so lucky. I drove to Austin on Sun. evening and stayed w/my friends sister for 2 days then flew out to California. We are heading home tomorrow. I only ran once this week...I didn't bring running clothes and it is extremely hilly here so I can't run nearly as long as I'd like! I'm ready to be back in the Woodlands and hoping the weather is cooler than last week!


From one of our honored teammate:

Hi Team,

I am so glad that Ike took a hike. I hope everyone is safe and hope that no one had any major losses. I also hope you have power. We lost it for over 24 hours and I know I was thankful it came on.

I am also thankful that you are a part of Team in Training and you are helping us get closer to a cure. This evening when Samantha said her prays, she asked God not to take Mommy like a family friend of ours and not for Mommy to have cancer ever again. That was so sweet, but also sad that she has to ask God for something like this at age 6. I can't help but think at times, how many more times will I be able to hold my little girl, will I get to see her grow up and see what she is going to be in life. Is she going to be that Astronaut Doctor that she wants to be or something else. It is hard, but I know that there are great people out there like you who really care and are helping us get closer to a cure. I know I say it over and over, but thank you.


11-13 we go! This weekend is the big race and I am so glad it is finally here. We are all taking it very easy this week and hoping nobody gets sick last minute. We have had a stomach bug going around the schools the past few weeks. I had my last training session with the team on Saturday. We only did 4 miles...that was nice :) Whitley also cut all her hair off on Monday for "Locks of Love"...she looks so different! I am very proud of her for wanting to do that...she loved her long hair but said she was glad someone who didn't have any would be able to use it.

I thought I'd share a story today about a young boys battle w/Leukemia. He was from our area...actually Galveston and lost his battle with cancer a couple weeks after hurricane Ike. Family members of his will be running with me and the rest of Team in Training this weekend in San Antonio. Here is his story:




From Coach Holly Lynn

Johnny Romano, an avid skate boarder and surfer from Galveston, Texas was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL) on May 26, 2005...he'd just completed the 1st grade. That was the day that Leukemia became a household name in the Romano home. Johnny, with his family by his side, would spend the next three years battling this dreaded disease.

In May of 2007, I met Johnny's mom, Julie Romano. Julie said at the first practice that she was looking for "something for her." As the mother of three and with one of those three battling cancer, she was lost in a world of helping others...and if she wanted to be there for anyone else, she needed to do something for herself first! So, she joined Team In Training. She trained with our Clear Lake Team over the next five months and completed the Nike Women's Marathon in October 2007. Johnny and his brother, Joey, were at the finish line to congratulate their mom! After the marathon, I kept in touch with Julie mainly through email, but we did have a couple of opportunities to catch Johnny and Joey in Galveston at their surfing competitions..."these kids can surf! "(that's my son's comment!!)

Johnny relapsed on May 16, 2008 and spent the next 121 days fighting for his life...again! Johnny fought cancer with such force that everyone believed that he would conquer and win! But tragically, the battle was lost on September 23, 2008 - what would have been the date of his last treatment if he hadn't relapsed. Johnny left this world for a much better place. He will be missed by his parents, Mike and Julie, his big bro Joey and his lovely little sis, Sophie. His departure leaves behind thousands of friends and fans as well. He will be greatly missed.

Johnny's life inspired thousands through his strength, determination and passion for life. Isn't it amazing how you can learn so much from someone so young and innocent! Johnny recognized at 10 years old what some of us will never grasp - discover your passion, discover what makes you happy and DO IT!


Supporter Comments

    "This effort if for a great cause. I wish you a great race and thanks for being sensitive to the needs of others. God Bless you Mandy."

    Steven Glenn

    Tue May 13 09:56:00 EDT 2008

    "Mandy- You are doing a great thing- you're an inspiration to those around you! Tara"

    Tara Wheeler

    Wed May 14 08:16:47 EDT 2008

    "You go, girl! I'm proud of you for stepping out in faith!"

    Cammi Moffatt

    Wed May 14 07:41:59 EDT 2008

    "I'm sure you will have no difficulty finishing, have fun and good luck. Where do I pledge for Korey's run?"

    Chris Swanson

    Mon May 19 01:06:04 EDT 2008

    "My thoughts are with your Dad and your family through this difficult time. All the best, Sam. Bon courage."

    marisa palacio

    Sun Aug 23 10:41:32 EDT 2009

    "Carey, My Sister is 1 1/2 years cancer free. I hope your Dad's treatment is successful. Your Old Friend, Rob"

    marisa palacio

    Mon Sep 14 01:43:45 EDT 2009

    "WOW this makes me smile! When you were talking about the families you had met -- the passion and heart in your voice -- leaves me no doubt that you can do this! You go girl!"

    Meredith Sipko

    Sat May 24 07:16:31 EDT 2008

    "I am so proud of you Mandy! I think this is a wonderful cause and you will do great! "

    Cindy Mountain

    Mon May 26 05:15:09 EDT 2008

    "So proud of your commitment to this worthy cause! Thank you for remembering James and for all of your efforts and especially your prayers!"

    stephanie ryan

    Wed May 28 11:36:39 EDT 2008

    "Just think of a big dog chasing you. That always helps me run faster :-) Good luck, Karl, Lee, Emma and Ellie"

    Karl Sand

    Mon Jun 09 06:19:38 EDT 2008

    "Good luck Mandy - you are doing a wonderful thing! Keep it up!!"

    Catherine Green

    Mon Aug 11 04:16:41 EDT 2008

    "Keep up the great work, you are doing awesome"


    Sat Sep 06 09:37:34 EDT 2008

    "Mandy, you are truly an inspiration for anyone doing something they believe in. I wish you the best. -Steve Mazziotti"

    steve mazziotti

    Mon Aug 04 12:30:50 EDT 2008

    "Glad you're doing this. Glad to provide support! "


    Mon Jul 28 09:17:19 EDT 2008

    "Way to go Mandy!! This will be one of the most amazing experiences!! "

    Ashley Crowder

    Thu Jul 24 01:19:23 EDT 2008

    "Mandy- I am so proud to know you! Thank you for running for this little boy and our friends that have been touched by this disease. "

    Misty Merdian

    Tue Jun 24 09:54:18 EDT 2008

    "Mandy, I know you'll do great!!!! We're cheering for you. Love, Keyna, Mike and Mackenzie"

    Keyna Willett

    Mon Jun 02 11:53:51 EDT 2008

    "Good luck with your run. I know you're training hard. It's a great way to stay in shape. Hope the Lord provides good weather. Love, Kevin julie and Karley"

    Kevin Sand

    Sat May 31 10:22:52 EDT 2008


    Kim Willing

    Fri Sep 28 10:44:48 EDT 2012

    "in loving memory of our dear friend Alex Inserra"

    Kim Willing

    Fri Sep 28 10:22:49 EDT 2012

    "We'll be thinking of you and your brother...may the trail be smooth and warm!"

    S Whigham

    Wed Aug 11 02:35:04 EDT 2010

    "Enjoy the adventure!"

    S Whigham

    Mon Aug 09 02:10:01 EDT 2010

    "Thank you Trinity Hall (Marius, Ollie, et al), Chris O'Hagan, Rob Soriano, Tony Garcia, Julie McGowan, Paul Matthaei, , Randy Wright, David Indorf, Tim Sommers, Billie, Tara, and other anonymous participants & donors!"

    steve mazziotti

    Mon Oct 18 02:26:16 EDT 2010

    "In memory of Amy Rudd & Todd Musa, in honor of Salomea Paez & Blake E."

    steve mazziotti

    Tue Oct 05 12:10:31 EDT 2010

    "Ecleynne, thank you for doing this. Angels in heaven and on Earth thank you. Godspeed to you!"

    Amber Oakley

    Tue Apr 17 12:43:32 EDT 2012

My Fundraising Total

Raised: $2,645.00 | Goal: $2,870.00
92 %

Make a Donation

We are sorry donations are no longer being accepted for this participant for this event.

My Thanks To

Keyna Willett $500.00
MARY JONES $300.00
David Pearson $250.00
Chris Swanson $150.00
Anonymous $100.00
Karl Sand $100.00
kristin nichols $100.00
Kevin Sand $100.00
Tara Wheeler $100.00
Mandy Sand $60.00
Timothy Molitoriss $50.00
Kyle Watson $50.00
Brent Honeyman $50.00
stephanie ryan $50.00
Cindy Mountain $50.00
Steven Glenn $50.00
Amber Oakley $40.00
Burt Crecelius $25.00
Kendrick Skipper $25.00
Catherine Green $25.00
steve mazziotti $25.00
Ashley Crowder $25.00
S Whigham $25.00
Robb Chernisky $25.00
Mary Mills $25.00
Anonymous $25.00
Dux Raymond Sy $25.00
marisa palacio $25.00
Leonard Selner $25.00
Cammi Moffatt $25.00
Kim Willing $20.00
Christy Nations $20.00
Anonymous $20.00
Patricia Lowenfield $20.00
Wade Hopkins $20.00
Iona Fiesk $20.00
Misty Merdian  
Meredith Sipko