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Uncle Gearing Up for Make-A-Wish Challenge

Date

July 11, 2014

Location

Lexington, NC

Frank, 30, is training to compete in the Make-A-Wish Trailblaze Challenge on Oct. 11 to raise funds and awareness for children like his 3-year-old nephew, Logan Grubb, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2013.

Grubb recently finished six months of chemotherapy, and once he is feeling better he will be treated to an all-expenses paid trip to Disney World in Orlando, Fla., on behalf of the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

"Logan is doing well," Frank said. "What amazes me is that even when he was going through chemo, he was always smiling. That's one thing that has really shocked me, and I've seen it with a lot of these kids (battling cancer). As adults, we only see the big picture, but these kids are happy to see just one moment in time. That is what I like about Make-A-Wish because a child's wish can be anything they want to do."

Frank is training rigorously on a weekly basis to ensure he can finish the 28.3-mile hike along the Appalachian Foothills Trail.

"I'm nervous about doing the 28.3-mile hike, but it is nothing in comparison to what these kids have to go through." Frank said.

Frank has raised roughly $500 of his $2,500 personal goal. To successfully compete the challenge, Frank must finish the hike in one day and raise $2,500. All monies raised will be donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

"I continue to be amazed by the children that are put in these very difficult situations," Frank said. "I also admire the people that provide these wishes for kids, both the donors and administrators. These wishes do a whole lot for these kids."

The Make-A-Wish Foundation is a nonprofit organization that arranges experiences to children with life-threatening medical conditions.

Frank got the idea to participate in the Trailblaze Challenge after his nephew, Tyler Grubb, 10, who is Logan's older brother, raised nearly $3,000 for pediatric cancer research by working on his own lemonade stand.

"(Tyler) challenged me to participate in the Trailblaze Challenge," said Frank, who teaches marketing at Catawba College. "All of the funds I raise goes to providing wonderful wishes to all these kids, who in my opinion, need a little bit of a ray of sunshine."

Frank added that being involved in the Trailblaze Challenge is something that he can share with his entire family.

"It's been something really nice because it (involves) both my nephews," Frank said. "Tyler is helping me with training and giving me motivation, as well as fundraising ideas."

Frank also said his involvement with the Make-A-Wish Foundation has definitely aided in Logan's road to recovery.

"To see Logan smile when he hears about it is enough of a reward for me," Frank said. "I haven't completed the challenge, and I'm kind of nervous about it, but it is something that I look forward to giving it my all."

Physicians have told Logan's mother, Wendy Grubb, that her son has no evidence of disease after two recent scans came back completely clear.

"Once you have a friend or family member or a child diagnosed with cancer, it's a whole new world that you don't want to be a part of," Grubb said.

Grubb also said she greatly appreciates her brother's selfless determination in tackling the Trailblaze Challenge.

"It just makes me so proud of him, and I know he can do it," Grubb said. "He told me that if his nephew can undergo chemotherapy and have a kidney removed, he can handle hiking 28 miles."

To make a donation to Frank's Make-A-Wish Trailblaze Challenge, visit bit.ly/TZ1ATH.

David Exum can be reached at 249-3981, ext. 227, or atqnir.rkhz@gur-qvfcngpu.pbz. Follow David on Twitter: @LexDisptachExum

http://www.the-dispatch.com/article/20140711/News/307119978

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