Runners will lace up their sneakers and compete in the third annual “Jog for Jude” 5K run/walk on April 23 at the Dunmore Community Center. Unlike traditional races, runners will not be competing against each other but collectively competing against a rare and horrible disease known as Sudden Infant Death Syndrome or SIDS.
SIDS is the number one cause of death in children under one year of age in the U.S. Over 4,000 lives are suddenly cut short each year due to SIDS; that equates to about one in every 2,000 children.
On July 23, 2014, the terrible disease took the life of a 3-month old Jude Zayac. In wake of his unexpected death, his parents, Greg and Theo Zayac of Dunmore, founded the Jude Zayac Foundation. The mission of Jude’s Foundation is to raise funds to support SIDS research and to enrich the lives of living children in the community.
The first “Jog for Jude” event was held on April 19, 2015, at the Dunmore Community Center. Since then, the foundation has raised over $167,000 and hosted over 3,000 runners/walkers with the help of hundreds of community volunteers.
The foundation has donated $110,000 to the Boston Children’s Hospital, which stands at the forefront of SIDS research. Also, it has donated $30,000 to St. Joseph’s Baby Pantry, which serves infants from families in need. This year’s event will again benefit the St. Joseph’s Baby Pantry.
The foundation hopes that members of the community will join it in the upcoming 5K run/walk and help it spread awareness and fight SIDS.