Run raises money, awareness
By James Peacemaker, Jr. Managing Editor
Oct 14, 2013, 14:39
JAMES PEACEMAKER JR./HOPEWELL NEWS/NEWS-PATRIOT The second wave of runners begin the 5k race Saturday at White Bank Park in Colonial Heights.
COLONIAL HEIGHTS — Calls of “Faster! Faster!” from 11-year-old Casey Wray quickly turned into “Whoa!” as a group of four pushing his running stroller kicked into full speed Saturday.
The 5k race that started at White Bank Park was held for his birthday, which was two days earlier. It also was organized by his mother, Belinda Wray, to help raise money and awareness for the Pediatric Hydrocephalus Foundation.
Casey, who was born with hydrocephalus, loves to participate in runs but he doesn’t have the mobility to run the distance himself, Belinda Wray said. But he has plenty of support.
“Team Casey” -- made up of Laura-Beth Louthan, Ali Smith, Dana Barefoot and Matt Ruland -- pushed him through the course and he finished third overall in the race.
“He loves racing and this is a great way to do that,” said Belinda Wray. She said he has several more races coming up.
Despite the gray skies and light rain Saturday, about 75 people participated in the run.
Mayor Scott Davis was present to blow the air horn to signal the start and he also presented a proclamation making it “Casey Wray Day.”
Hydrocephalus is a condition where cerebrospinal fluid builds up around the brain. The excessive liquid can lead to abnormal widening of spaces in the brain called ventricles and creates pressure on the tissue. Symptoms can vary as can the cause.
It happens in about one or two people per 1,000.
Symptoms may include vomiting, sleepiness, irritability, downward deviation of the eyes and seizures. Other possible symptoms are loss of coordination or developmental delays. The disorder is typically treated with a shunt that diverts fluid to another part of the body.
AMES PEACEMAKER JR./HOPEWELL NEWS/NEWS-PATRIOT Casey Wray is pushed toward the finish line by Laura-Beth Louthan, Ali Smith and Dana Barefoot during a 5k Saturday at White Bank Park to raise money to fight hydrocephalus.
The event benefited the Pediatric Hydrocephalus Foundation, an all-volunteer nonprofit that raises awareness about hydrocephalus and provides support to families and children affected by the brain condition. PHF also raises money to find new treatment options, advocates on behalf of the members of the hydrocephalus community, and lobbies policy makers. Visit www.HydrocephalusKids.org for more information.