The wife and I recently realized that somehow a couple of my running medals were lost when we moved. They appear to now be taking up residence in a local landfill.
The loss of one in particular made us both quite sad. It was the medal from my first full marathon, the 2014 Seattle Rock ‘n’ Roll marathon.
Now I realize these medals are simply shiny objects and have no intrinsic value. But this medal meant a lot to me. I busted my ass training for that race. That marathon was completed 26 months to the day after I had a heart attack and finishing that race was sort of the pinnacle of my quest to give heart disease the finger.
So yes, that simple little award meant a great deal to me. I was surprisingly upset over it’s loss. I kept saying, “It’s just a medal. You still finished, and that’s what matters.” It actually bothered me that loosing it bothered me so much.
On a whim, I decided to contact the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon organization and see if there was any way it was possible to replace a missing finisher medal.
Given the number of races this group organizes all over the country, and given that I wasn’t even asking for the medal for the most recent incarnation of the Seattle Rock & Roll Marathon, I figured the odds of even getting a response from them approached zero. I knew there was no way they would have medals from a race that took place 18 months ago in one of dozens of cities they are run in. No. Freaking. Way.
But I had to try, so I fired off an email, fully expecting it to land in the same landfill my medal was buried in.
I was wrong.
A few days after emailing them, I was surprised to see a response in my inbox from Apolonia, a Registration Coordinator with the organization. Assuming it was going to be along the lines of, “We’re so sorry to hear you’ve lost your finisher medal, but there isn’t anything we can do,” I opened the email.
Imagine my surprise when I saw this:
Thank you for your email. We are happy to send you a medal from 2014 Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Marathon. Please send me your mailing address. We will send that out today. Thank you!!
I may have gotten a little misty.
But I still didn’t really believe it. There was no way they were just going to send me a medal from a race I ran almost 18 months ago.
I was wrong, again.
The picture above of the medal I’m holding in my hand wasn’t taken after I finished the race last summer. It was taken last night. Apolonia was true to her word and she shipped me a replacement medal, no charge.
That is how it’s done folks.
I’ll probably never run another full marathon. The half marathon is, for me, far more fun and significantly less painful than running full marathons.
And I’ll run every Rock ‘n’ Roll half that I can. Those folks…. rock.
Thank you Rock ‘n’ Rollers, and thank you Apolonia. You want WAY above the call of duty. Bravo.