In 2015, the mom of one of my former students that I taught way back in 2004 contacted me to let me know that her son had been injured. Israel had always been one of my favorite students and we had kept in touch over the years. He was more than injured. He had been shot eight times by someone who was attempting to steal his car from his apartment’s parking lot. A former football player and active guy, Israel was at first unable to feel or move his legs and was lucky to even be alive as one of the bullets barely missed his heart. When I went to visit him in the hospital shortly after the shooting, I gave Israel one of my half marathon medals, and told him he still had to earn it by completing a half marathon some day. In the last two years, Israel has regained feeling in his legs and can walk short distances with the aid of a walker; however, most of his time is spent in a wheel chair. So, on October 29, 2017, his mom’s birthday, Israel is going to cross the finish line of the Houston Half Marathon on his own two feet, with my friends Brenda Banning and Maria Reed, and I taking turns pushing him the rest of the way. The Houston Half Marathon is a great race, and the Houston Striders and event director have been so helpful in helping me help Israel earn his own half marathon medal.