Sunday, May 30, 2010

Stillwater Marathon Expo

On Saturday I went to the Stillwater Marathon expo.  On Sunday I am running the Jon Francis Half Marathon.  The expo had a number of speakers, and I was able to listen to Dane Rauschenberg who wrote "See Dane Run" about running 52 marathons in 52 weeks.  He was a great speaker (and was a swimmer like me).   I had to buy his book, and so far have enjoyed the first few chapters.  I also got my personalized bib with "Thompson" on it and a very nice poly race shirt.  The shirt was really soft, and since my other poly shirts are like sandpaper I decided to wear it on race day. 

The Expo had a bunch of vendors that I assume are normal for this type of event.  The one booth I did dwell at was for the book "Bringing Jon Home, the Wilderness Search for Jon Francis".  The half marathon is named in honor of Jon, a very talented runner at Stillwater High School.  From the book website:

On Saturday morning, July 15, 2006, Jon Francis, climbed to the summit of the Grand Mogul, in the Sawtooth Mountain Range of Central Idaho. He never returned.  Law enforcement searched for only 29 hours. After the evening search team briefing, on July 17, 2006, the Incident Commander, approached me and said; "David, you need to give your son up to the mountain."

Of course no family is going to say OK and go home, and this book is about what happens next and the search they undertook.  Now the family helps others via the "The Jon Francis Foundation, an Advocate for Wilderness Search and Safety."  As a backpacker this especially hits home, and my brother logs thousands of trail miles every year.  It is good to know organizations like this exist.


  1. What a touching story about the race's namesake. Glad you had a great experience at the expo. Cool shirt, too!