“I've gotten people who have said I've gotten them to run more, to exercise more, to do their first marathon, to volunteer more. That all feels incredibly odd. But today, someone commented today that I inspire them to love more which may be the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me.” – Iram Leon
I love hearing stories about incredible people. About the amazing things that they do. They give us hope. They inspire us. They show us that happiness is a choice. That optimism is a way of life.
I recently learned about an incredible 32-year-old man and father named Iram Leon. Iram is living with brain cancer. He had always been a runner, but when he was diagnosed, he endeavored to take his 6-year-old daughter Kiana on his runs.
Now, anyone who runs a marathon is pretty awesome in my books, let alone someone who has been diagnosed with an illness. But let's be clear. Not only did Iram run a marathon but he won it - while pushing Kiana in a stroller - all the while raising funds for her college education with each step! And if that weren't impressive enough, he has run a total of four marathons since his diagnosis in late 2010.
George Patton is quoted as saying “I don't measure a man's success by how high he climbs, but how high he bounces when he hits bottom.” I can’t pretend to imagine the challenges that Iram faces, but I can certainly join in celebrating his strength of character. When he hit bottom, he endeavored to bounce back and share in that with his little daughter. Too often we look to celebrities as role models, but people like Iram are the true role models we can all learn from.