NORFOLK, VA -- Lt. Geoff Weber, based at Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek, VA, completed the 262-mile Run Across Virginia for the American Lung Association in early November. The idea for his “Patriot Run” began while he was stationed in Iraq.
“You always want some sort of goal for deployment,” Weber says. “I was looking for a physical training goal and was trying to think of something for when I got back. I saw the American Lung Association was a charity partner of the Marine Corps Marathon. I wanted to help the Lung Association in some capacity, so I e-mailed them, and they told me if I raise donations, they’ll give me an entry in the race.”
As an ultra marathon runner who competes in marathons greater than 100 miles, just running in the Marine Corps Marathon wasn’t enough of a challenge for Weber.
“I thought, ‘They’re the American Lung Association of Virginia, so why not run across the state?’” Weber says.
He returned to Virginia from Iraq Oct. 15 and kicked off the run Oct. 29 with the Marine Corps Marathon. For four days, he averaged 55 miles each day. Weber’s friend drove an RV the whole way, which became his sanctuary during his downtime.
“Every time I’d finish for the day, it would be so nice to stop in there to get a shower and surf the Internet. I was so appreciative to have that incredible support,” he says.
Friends and family also supported Weber by running with him for a few miles along the way. His daughter and her cross-country team ran with him for a few miles, his co-worker Chief Intelligence Specialist Chris Kincaid joined him for eight miles, and his driver parked the RV for the last mile of the race and ran with him to the finish line.
Weber is passionate about promoting healthy lungs because lung cancer took his grandfather’s life. His run helped Virginia kick off Lung Cancer Awareness Month, which began Nov. 1.
Weber may have completed his run, but he is not done promoting healthy lungs. Weber has raised $2,000 for the American Lung Association of Virginia and has a goal of $50,000.