Long time RUN FOR AUTISM alum, Pete Jewett has twin granddaughters, both of whom were diagnosed with autism at age two. When the girls were attending pre-school, the school held a 5K to raise money for their autism program. Jewett was physically out of shape and could not participate in the race, which broke his heart. He used that as fuel to get back in shape, and in 2009 he signed up to run the Virginia Beach Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon, where he found OAR. This was his first race longer than a 5K.
“The opportunity to run for something other than myself was the only reason I was able to make it through a half marathon,” Jewett said.
Since that first half marathon, Jewett has run many races as part of the RUN FOR AUTISM team. He has participated in the Myrtle Beach Half Marathon, the Raleigh Rocks Half Marathon, the Richmond Half Marathon, the Virginia Ten Miler 3 times, the Blue Ridge Half Marathon 5 times, the Tobacco Road Marathon, the Shamrock Marathon, and the Mount Desert Island Marathon. He also completed his third Marine Corps Marathon for OAR last year. Afterward, he posted on the team’s Facebook wall.
“The opportunity to run for something other than myself
was the only reason I was able to make it through a half marathon.”
“I finished what was by far the hardest of the six marathons I have run, I gathered my medal from the Marine Lt and headed to the charity village,” Jewett said on Facebook. “As I came close to the OAR tent I heard a round of applause and cheers. I looked around to see what was going on and realized it was from the OAR tent for me! I am pretty sure I was not the first OAR runner to the tent! Thank you for an amazing group of individuals associated with OAR either as a staff member or runner! I enjoyed seeing and talking with you at the tent and on the course. I really feel like a member of a team and a greater cause! Certainly the only reason I would train 20 weeks all summer to run a marathon!”
“I really feel like a member of a team and a greater cause!
Certainly the only reason I would train 20 weeks
all summer to run a marathon!”
Outside of running on the RUN FOR AUTISM team, Jewett began a yearly charity 5K at his work to raise money for and support OAR. Last year, the 5K raised $8,000; in the past two years the race has raised a total of $115,000 for twelve different charities.
As long as Jewett is coordinating the event he says he “will keep championing OAR as a charity selection!”
For Jewett, being a part of the RUN FOR AUTISM team means bringing his loved ones together and supporting his family.
“OAR and the staff over the years have always been so supportive and kind,” Jewett said. “We took our granddaughters to one of the MCM dinners and it was such an honor to share that with them and be a part of the OAR family. This year the girls graduate from high school with over a 4.0 GPA, both are going to college. Sara wants to study neuro research to study autism.”
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Join the RUN FOR AUTISM team.