The annual Cady Tucker Run in the Spirit reaches some significant milestones this year, some that made me do a double take. I spoke with Bill’s Bike and Run manager Gray Augustus and Cady’s mother Pat for more insight on what this run has done for Districts 91 and 93.
The Medal Stand: Cady Tucker Run achieves milestones
The seventh annual Cady Tucker Run in the Spirit reaches some notable milestones this year.
The event, which consists of a 5k walk/run, 5-mile run, 5-mile relay and kids run, has provided automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to District 91 and 93 schools through race proceeds. Cady, whom the event is named for, died at age 11 in a three-vehicle head on collision in August 2002. Cady received no emergency treatment from an AED or CPR from EMTs at the scene of the crash. Including the three AEDs donated from this year’s race to Holy Rosary School, Thunder Ridge High School and Theresa Bunker Elementary, 14 AEDs (a value of $22,000) will have been donated to schools in Bonneville County since 2014.
Gray Augustus of Bill’s Bike and Run first saw that figure in the spring upon perusing the proposal papers send to Teton Toyota, one of the Cady Tucker Run sponsors.
“(Pat Tucker)’s always hit the ground running,” Augustus said Tuesday by phone. “I hadn’t really grasped how much she’d put into it until I sat down and looked at the sponsorship (papers). I started looking at it and I was like, ‘Holy cow.’ It’s such an easy connection to see how it helps the community. Personally, it’s kinda cool because I’ll be teaching at one of the schools one of the AEDs is going to and my daughter goes to Holy Rosary.”
Pat Tucker, Cady’s mother and the president of the nonprofit People Against Impaired Driving (PAID), said the community’s ‘amazing response’ to the run and its cause has allowed for these AEDs to be purchased and distributed.
“We’ve put so much heart into this run,” Tucker said Wednesday by phone. “We’ve reached out to the community again and again over the years. I try to make this run as relevant to the community as I possibly can.”
Idaho Falls resident Mike Connolly, who was revived by CPR and an AED upon going into sudden cardiac arrest while skiing in the back country in Grand Teton National Park in 2017, was last year’s speaker. Bill Davis has confirmed he will speak at 7:45 a.m. Saturday morning via GoToMeeting and Laura Stark is possibly speaking. In July 2016, Stark and Bill’s daughter Anne were on a coast to coast cycling trip with the nonprofit organization Bike & Build when they were struck from behind while entering Idaho Falls. Davis was killed and Stark was paralyzed from the waist down. Stark returned to Idaho Falls in June with a handcycle to complete the portion of the cross-country trip she was unable to complete in 2016. She and her Bike & Build team reached Cannon Beach last Friday.
Tucker said as of Monday evening, 292 individuals have registered for Saturday. The relay division, which debuted in 2015, reached a milestone this year with 29 teams registered. Nine of those teams consist of eastern Idaho high school student athletes.
“I’m really excited about that,” Tucker said. “With Bill Davis speaking, this could make a big difference in their lives.”
Tucker said she encourages participants to arrive at Snake River Landing in time for the CPR and AED demonstrations scheduled for 7:30 a.m. Saturday and Davis’s speech at 7:45 a.m. The relay division participants begin at 8 a.m., the 5k run/walk and 5-mile run participants start at 9 and the kids run starts at 10:30 a.m. This year’s event T-shirts feature a design drawn by Cady, and there will be customized Cady Tucker banners marking the course this year.
Tucker said she has met five people who have been resuscitated with the help of CPR and/or AEDs, which has strengthened her commitment to the cause of PAID and the run honoring Cady, who had many passions including art and sports.
“It is incumbent upon every person to know CPR, every one of us,” Tucker said. “That is what makes the difference. I want to ensure that no other family goes through the anguish of never knowing, ‘could my child have been saved?’”