PARK CITY, UT – (Oct. 13) U.S. Nordic Combined Ski Team athlete Bryan Fletcher (Steamboat Springs, CO) will be doing his part to help others, participating in the Walk for Hope on Oct. 17 in Park City, UT. Fletcher teamed up with Candlelighters, an organization that helps families and children with cancer, to put on the event, which will hopefully raise $30, 000.
"Our goal is trying to raise $30,000 for the program," says Fletcher."This is a small organization, they only go up to kids that are 18 years old, so the focus is the kids $30,000 is an average goal for them, but it will help out tremendously."
Fletcher has a personal connection to children with cancer. At 3 years old, he was diagnosed with acute lymphatic leukemia. After chemotherapy treatment for a year, the cancer went into remission. With the remembrance of his own story, Fletcher is committed to help using his Olympic dream as a guide.
"I think it's easier for a person who has or is trying to reach a goal or make the Olympics. For me, I kind of have a good pedestal to start working with kids here, just trying to build up to the Olympics because I can use it in my coverage leading up to the Olympics," states Fletcher. "I am going to get a little bit of free press out of it to try and promote these events."
For Fletcher, the most important thing is being able to raise money to assist the families who need help.
"Some of the money goes to research, but a lot of the money actually goes to families and into programs that help families. The kids can go to camps for cancer where they can socialize with other kids their age who have cancer, explains Fletcher. "That allows them to have some fun and they're not stuck in the hospital all the time. It's a good program."
Fletcher is in Lake Placid, NY for a training camp to prepare for the upcoming winter season and Olympics. Fletcher will be leaving the camp earlier in order to participate in the Walk of Hope. Following the walk, Fletcher will be pressing forward in hopes of making the Olympic Team.
"My main goal for the season is just to make the Olympics," explains Fletcher. "It has been a goal of mine since I was a kid, so obviously that’s the big goal. Anything else I can accomplish in the season is considered, to me, a bonus."
The Walk of Hope is Saturday, October 17 at Utah's Liberty Park. The race portion begins at 8 A.M., following with the walk at 10 A.M. For more information, go to www.childhoodcancer.org.