Updated: Sep 16
For more than a decade, the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon has honored a group of people annually who have inspired others by their efforts to overcome obstacles or challenges to take part in our race or represented the event in a positive way.
While Spirit Award Winners were officially announced a few weeks ago, we wanted to continue to recognize these tremendous people for the impact they have on their communities and OUR race. We asked each of the winners some fun questions and found out some of their favorites so keep reading to get to know them a little better!
Jase Headings, Cincinnati, OH – After discovering his passion for running during his sophomore season at Jonathan Alder, Jase went on to win an indoor state championship and set school records—amongst many other accomplishments. Jase committed to Cincinnati, only to have stress fractures derail his freshman outdoor season and Covid eliminate his sophomore season. Jase was then diagnosed with Hypertrophic Obstructive Cardiomyopathy, a serious heart condition that ended his athletic career just before his junior season. Fortunately, and thanks to a surgically implanted defibrillator in his chest, medication, and regular check-ups with doctors, Jase is still able to run. Jase is active in many facets; one being volunteering at cross country camps where he confided that he still had a goal of running a marathon someday. Jase is registered for the Columbus ½ Marathon this fall and training well.
Fun facts about Jase:
Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: Black Raspberry Chip from Graeter’s
Favorite Movie: Spiderman—which, of course, has nothing to do with his favorite superhero being Spiderman!
What Keeps Him Motivated While Training: The shoes he rewards himself with every month
Favorite Part of the Columbus Marathon Course: Jase isn’t sure what his favorite part is yet as this is his first time running OUR race—but he can’t wait to find out!
Liz Sklaw, Bexley, OH– Liz is not only the mother of a 2022 Patient Champion, but a fierce advocate for all children receiving care at Nationwide Children's Hospital. After learning that her son, Ethan, had Pediatric Scleroderma, a chronic disease that will require lifelong care, Liz was inspired by his courage and determined that Ethan see he remained capable of anything. Alongside her professional responsibilities, family commitments, and Ethan's treatments, Liz became the top fundraiser for the Children's Champions fundraising program in 2021, bringing awareness to the program and highlighting not just the patients receiving care, but the incredible community of doctors, nurses, and staff at Nationwide Children's Hospital that provide this care. Liz ran the 1/2 Marathon in 2021 and committed to Ethan that she would run the full marathon if he became a Patient Champion. And this year, both are coming to fruition - Ethan will be one of the 2022 Patient Champions lining the course, and his mother will follow through on her promise to run the full marathon, modeling for Ethan the very thing she promised when he was diagnosed: that they can do anything!
Fun facts about Liz:
Favorite Post-Race Food: Liz rewards herself with Shake Shack after a race
Favorite Dessert: Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream
What Keeps Her Motivated While Training: Liz says: “My son, who is a Marathon Mile Champion this year, and my daughter. I want to show them you can DO ANYTHING!”
Thanks for reading and stay tuned for the rest of the week to learn more about the rest of the 2022 Spirit Award Winners!