Wearing his favorite superhero t-shirt, 6-year-old Nicholas Stickel, Jr. got a little help from mom as he crossed the finish line at Saturday’s Ronald McDonald House of Delaware 5K. Nicholas, who suffers from Pilomyxoid Astrocytoma and needs assistance walking since surgery to remove a tumor, had a big group of fans wearing “Nicholas’ Fight” t-shirts cheering him on at the Frawley Stadium, including the iconic clown himself.
It was the kind of race where you didn’t need to finish first or have your best time to feel great about being there.
“Having my son walk across the finish line – when doctors told us 6 months ago Nicholas may never walk – is an indescribable feeling,” remarked Christine Weideman, who is Nicholas’ mom.”We have been so grateful for this amazing place (RMHDE) these last almost 6 months during Nicholas’ recovery. His recovery wouldn’t have been possible without our home away from home,” she said.
What makes this race special are the many families like the Weidemans who come with children who are undergoing treatment at A.I. DuPont Hospital for Children and are supported by the Ronald McDonald House of Delaware.
Frawley Stadium, home of the Blue Rocks baseball team, was the perfect place to start and end the race. Presenting prizes and awards beside the field, RMHDE Executive Director Pam Cornforth expressed her gratitude to the many race participants and fundraisers. “From the bottom of my heart, thank you,” she said.
Les Dukart with the Delaware Restaurant Association and a retired McDonalds owner operator, collected over 1,000 prizes from area restaurants worth more than $3,000. “The restaurant community was incredibly generous,” he said.
Nearly 700 participated in this year’s 5K, which was administered by races2run.com. Sixteen-year-old Connor Nisbet, a sophomore at Wilmington Friends School, was the overall winner with a time of 16:47, and the top female winner, Padua Academy sophomore Alicia Lenoir, was the fastest woman clocking a time of 20:08.
Congratulations to everyone who turned out for a great morning of fun on the Riverfront in support of a great cause!