Men to run 126.2 miles from Atlanta to Warner Robins

awoolen@macon.comJanuary 16, 2013 

  • If you go

    What: Marathon, Half Marathon and 5K Run/Walk
    Where: Museum of Aviation, Ga. 247 and Russell Parkway, Warner Robins
    When: Marathon starts at 8 a.m., half marathon at 8:15 a.m. and 5k at 8:30 a.m.
    Registration: Available online at active.com until 5 p.m. Wednesday. If space is available, same day registration is available for 5K runners only. The marathon is $85, the half marathon is $60 and the 5K is $30.
    More information: Call 923-6600 or visit www.museumofaviation.org.

WARNER ROBINS -- Imagine running 126.2 miles.

That is what John McBrayer of Atlanta is doing with five other men.

The group will leave Atlanta Friday at 4 a.m. and travel south, hoping to arrive in Warner Robins Saturday at 4 a.m. to run in the Museum of Aviation’s 17th annual Marathon, Half Marathon and 5K Run/Walk, which starts at 8 a.m.

The six men, who also include Johan Desmet, Errol Josephs, Eric Loffland, Deano Montreuil and Jason Miller, are running to raise awareness and funds for Talk about Curing Autism’s Georgia chapter.

“None of us have autistic children, but we all appreciate and respect what TACA is doing in our community,” said McBrayer, who has attended several of the group’s meetings.

All of this was quite shocking to Jackie Moore, TACA Georgia chapter director, who has never had anyone who wasn’t affected by autism do something of this magnitude.

“I said, ‘You are going to run to where?’ ” Moore recalled saying to McBrayer when he proposed the idea.

The two met during TACA’s 10K race on Labor Day in Atlanta.

“People like John make you realize the world has some good people in it. He’s doing it because he wants to make a difference,” Moore said.

The money raised will help TACA provide education, support and information to families living with autism, she said.

“The money will go toward free seminars and events,” Moore said.

McBrayer, Desmet, Josephs, Loffland, Montreuil and Miller plan to run the entire 126.2 miles. Scott Meckert is meeting them at the 50-mile mark and will continue the next 76.2 with them.

McBrayer has never run this far before, but three of the runners ran a 100-mile race from Athens to Atlanta for a different fundraiser.

They will have a minimum of two cars within three miles of them for the duration and about 10 volunteers will work in shifts to help with food, clothing, water and other items.

The runners are an inspiration to the TACA chapter, said Moore, whose membership in Georgia is about 1,000 and 30,000 in the U.S.

According to tacanow.org, autism affects one in every 91 children.

So far, the group has raised close to $3,000, McBrayer said, which is short of his $6,000 goal.

“If I could ask for anything, it would be for some donations, big or small, and maybe a few prayers or nice thoughts to get across the finish line safely,” McBrayer said.

To donate, visit www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/126fortaca/Run4TACA. To learn more about TACA and events happening in Georgia, go to www.tacanow.org/georgia.

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