Jonathan Negretti, principal of local personal injury law firm Negretti & Associates, announced his participation as a competitor in the 2020 World Marathon Challenge. The World Marathon Challenge, which involves the unfathomable feat of running seven full marathons on seven continents in seven days, will kick-off on Feb. 6, 2020 in Novo, Antartica. Negretti will be one of only 50 competitors and will be competing to raise funds and awareness for Heather’s Mission, a nonprofit organization co-founded by Negretti’s wife to help those suffering from Crohn’s and Colitis Disease.
Negretti is personally afflicted with Ulcerative Colitis (UC), a type of inflammatory bowel disease that is a chronic and oftentimes debilitating disorder. It is predicted by the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation that the two diseases affect more than 1.7 million Americans, but their unpredictability and the stigma attached to them makes them hard to diagnose and treat, so most people suffer in silence. Negretti was diagnosed with UC 20 years ago and eventually had to have surgery to remove most of his large intestine, which now requires him to live full-time with an ostomy bag. Negretti will be the only World Marathon Challenge competitor with a “disability,” even though he doesn’t consider it that.
“Participating in the World Marathon Challenge is not only an epic personal challenge, but an incredible platform for me to raise awareness for Heather’s Mission,” said Negretti. “My hope is to garner enough attention to make a difference in people’s lives and inspire others who are living with an ostomy.”
Heather’s Mission has adopted a stuffed animal bear called “Awesome Ollie the Ostomy Bear,” which it is working to get into the hands of patients who have undergone an ostomy surgery. Negretti is raising funds for Heather’s Mission with a goal of donating one thousand Awesome Ollie Bears to the nonprofit organization. If he meets this goal, he will take Awesome Ollie around the globe with him on the World Marathon Challenge.
To help Heather’s Mission donate one thousand bears to those in need before Negretti leaves for the World Marathon Challenge, visit heathermission.org.