Cancer survivor fulfills goal of running 5K

To his friends and family, Mohawk Valley athlete Jason VenBenschoten of Westmoreland is a walking miracle.

Posted: Aug 8, 2020 6:22 PM
Updated: Aug 8, 2020 11:29 PM

WESTMORELAND, N.Y. --- To his friends and family, Mohawk Valley athlete Jason VenBenschoten of Westmoreland is a walking miracle.

Jason suffered a brain hemorrhage due to a cancerous tumor back in 2018. He was in a coma for over a day that doctors thought he wouldn't come out of. When he did, Jason couldn't walk and had trouble with his vision.

Jason registered for this year's Boilermaker Road Race, but because he still struggles with running, Jason couldn't participate in the race virtually without his friends there to make sure he doesn't fall.

So this year he created his own fake (faux) Boilermaker that he called the "Fauxlermaker". Jason said throughout his road to recovery, he couldn't imagine being able to run as he did on Saturday.

"When I woke up from cancer I couldn't walk at all so and the fact that I'm running is a big deal for me," said VenBenschoten.

The 5K (3.1 miles) course began at Jason's house and ended at the 7 Hamlets Brewery in Westmoreland. At the finish line, Jason's friends and family watched as the group of 10 runners crossed the line. A Boilermaker representative was also there to greet him with an honorary 2020 Boilermaker hat and pin.

"It was awfully good of them to come out and give that to me. I never officially ran a race but now I have an official finish," said VenBenschoten.

His wife Bethany VenBenschoten also ran with him and said she couldn't be more proud after all that he's been through. 
"Every day, every time he opens his eyes in the morning I'm proud because he went through some of the hardest things anyone would ever have to go through."VenBenschoten.

Jason ended with a time of 37 minutes beating his 45-minute goal. Jason plans on running the Boilermaker next year.

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