MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Thousands of St. Jude Memphis Marathon participants helped the hospital raise more than $8 million Saturday.
“Pretty much everyone here is my warrior, one person can’t fight alone,” said 15-year-old Grace Richardson, who is battling stage IV cancer.
Some elite athletes breezed through the course, and others showed you their pain. There were also supporters who helped in other ways.
“Everybody needs a chance to fight, and it’s important for them to get what they need,” 11-year-old Natalie Stanley said.
Natalie spent the last year raising more than $1,200 for the hospital.
The Georgia 11-year-old is spending her birthday in Memphis this weekend; she said giving a check in person is the best birthday gift.
“They don’t give families a bill, they need donations,” she said.
Because of Natalie’s giving spirit and the support of the thousands who crossed the finish line, Grace’s parents don’t have to worry about how to pay for treatment.
“Peace of mind knowing we could come here and get the best medical care for our child,” Kim Richardson said.
Grace said she can’t say "thank you" enough.
“Because of you, I’m living another day, because of you, I get to breathe one more minute."