Patients Rising Says 75-Year Old Don Wright is Closing in on His Goal to Run 100 Marathons with Cancer – Fargo, May 21st

Diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma in 2003

Don Has Overcome Recent Medical Setbacks to Make the Fargo, ND
Race His 96
th Marathon Since

WASHINGTON & FARGO, N.D.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Patients Rising, a non-profit patient advocacy organization, announced
today that 75-year old cancer patient Don Wright has entered the Fargo
, on Saturday, May 21st. This will be his 96th
marathon with cancer, while on active treatment, putting Don on the
verge of achieving his goal to run in at least 100 marathons since his
diagnosis 13 years ago. In December 2012, Don joined an elite group of
runners who have completed at least one marathon in all fifty states.

In its 12th year, the 2016 Fargo Marathon 26.2 mile course is
unique because the race starts from inside the Fargodome. That means
approximately 15,000+ cheering fans and spectators will be there to urge
on the marathoners.

“This is the third time I will run this race,” says Don. “I ran here in
2014 and back in 2006. It’s one of my favorites because the course is
flat! Also, the tree-lined streets of north Fargo are beautiful this
time of year and quite picturesque. We love running through the
neighborhoods while everyone watches the parade. And we do venture into
Moorhead in Minnesota, so this is a two-state race, making it a truly
one-of-a-kind experience.”

Diagnosed in 2003 with multiple myeloma, a cancer of cells in the bone
marrow, Don had been taking a pill powerful enough to keep him in
remission for seven years. Recently, there were signs that the cancer
was returning, so his doctors have been trying new treatment regimens to
see which is most effective for him. To date, Don is on his 5th
treatment, spanning the last 13 years.

“There Is Hope After Diagnosis”, says Don. “I have been on a new combo
treatment regimen for a number of weeks now, adding a new infusion that
stimulates the immune system to the pill I’ve been taking all these
years. I am very grateful for the incredible advances in medical

However, there are threats to this medical innovation in the form of
critics who are utilizing platforms called “value-frameworks” that would
limit healthcare spending on new treatments. As a 13-year cancer
survivor, Don believes “value-framework” is just code for reducing costs
by rationing treatments, and the result would be to deny the best
medications to those who need them the most. Don cannot stress enough
that now is not the right time to deny the medical progress that has
worked so well.

Ardis Wright, Don’s loving wife for the last 53 years says, “If it
weren’t for the fact that my husband has been given access to these
innovative treatments every step of the way, I doubt that Don would have
been able to stay ahead of this disease. We should make every effort to
keep moving forward. These are the greatest tools for survival cancer
patients have.”

Don runs under the eRace Cancer banner, a social media campaign
that has raised awareness of multiple myeloma and medical innovation on
behalf of a variety of charities for several years. Don is pleased to be
running now on behalf of Patients Rising.

“Don shows us what can be achieved when we say ‘Right Treatment, Right
Patient, Right Now,’” says Terry Wilcox, Executive Director of Patients
Rising. “Don personifies our mission to encourage medical innovation,
and to empower patients to fight for their needs. Don inspires all of us
to embrace the possible, even when, in marathon terms, it seems like
it’s 26 miles away.”

The Fargo Marathon will be Don’s 96th overall and his 5th in
2016. Don says “Last time I ran here I found the race fun,
family-friendly and full of energy. I expect more of the same.”



Initiate PR
Deanne Eagle, 917-837-5866