Charities raising money through the Los Angeles Marathon are on track to reap a record $4 million this year, according to estimates from Concord Endurance Group. About 65 charities raise money through the multiple races taking place this weekend across Los Angeles.
Days before the big run, long distance runner Mamie Coleman trained at Kenneth Hahn State Park. The misty morning gave Coleman some much-needed “me time” and a break from her and her husband’s stressful jobs.
“I try not to think about it,” Coleman said as she stretched in the grass. “I try to stay busy.”
It’s been 18 years since Coleman joined a firefighter family. Her husband, Captain Logan Fields, is a Los Angeles Fire Captain with a regional training group. His brothers are firefighters, too.
When there’s a major disaster like the Woolsey Fire, her entire family feels the heat.
“It was scary because you don’t know if your husband or your brother-in-laws are coming back home,” Coleman said.
To cope with the stress, her family hits the trails and on Sunday, Coleman will run the charity relay on behalf of the Widows, Orphans and Disabled Firemen’s Fund, a charity that helps fire families deal with the realities of a dangerous job. That means illness, injury and even death.
“There have been times when things didn’t turn out right for other firefighters and you’re thinking ‘oh my god that could have been my husband,’” Coleman said. “These firefighters put their lives on the line every day.”
Coleman raised $7,000 for the charity by running the race.