Jackson inmates raise funds for pediatric cancer research


JACKSON, Mich. (WLNS)– A group of inmates didn’t let time behind bars stop them raise money for a good cause.

For a second year in a row they raised money to go towards reaching a deadly childhood cancer, and this time they ran side-by-side with a Michigan Supreme Court justice.

This month thousands of people will run 5K’s in every state in honor of Chad Carr, who was diagnosed with a rare pediatric brain cancer in 2014.

“When they tell you, yeah there’s not gonna be a surgery, you can’t do that on this type of tumor, he probably has nine months to live, I mean it just floors you,” Chad’s father Jason says. “There’s nothing that could ever prepare you for that.”

Chad spent the next 15 months in treatment, but died in 2015 at the age of six. His family started organizing annual runs in his memory shortly after.

Once a prison employee told inmates at the G. Robert Cotton Correctional Facility in Jackson about the ChadTough Foundation, more than 100 of them wanted to get involved.

Many of them had personal reasons for running. James Adrian says he lost a grandfather and cousin to different kinds of cancer.

“The fact that we’re in here, it’s not much that we can do to give back,” Adrian says. “So any time there’s a program coming through here, anything we could get involved in. I’m involved with chance for life, I’ll be on the warden’s forum. So anything I can do to better the prison, better my community, I’m all for it.”

The inmates raised $2000 for pediatric cancer research this year in addition to the 5K. Michigan Supreme Court chief justice Bridget McCormack ran with them and says she was inspired by their willingness to help in any way they could.

“Anybody can do good, at any time, from anywhere,” she says. “That doesn’t mean we always do, but when these guys do it, I think it really can inspire better angels in just about anybody.”

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