News Room Articles

Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon Announce 2016 Patient Champions Mile Themes

Columbus, OH - 10/12/2016

The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon is pleased to announce the mile themes for its field of “Patient Champions” who will represent 24 of the 26.2 miles on this year’s course. The other two miles along the Marathon route will be deemed the “Encore Mile” and “Angel Mile” and many miles will be sponsored by a corporate or community organization. The full list of Patient Champions, their mile themes and mile assignments are below.
The marathon Patient Champions represent every child treated at Nationwide Children’s, with more than 1.2 million patient visits each year. They have shared their stories to inspire the athletes and will cheer for them along every mile of the course.
The Encore Mile will feature Patient Champions who were honored along the race route the previous four years. The Angel Mile is dedicated to the angels of Nationwide Children’s who have already run their race. The Angel Mile will be lined with banners and represented by families honoring the lives of their children while cheering on participants.
Marathon and ½ Marathon participants are encouraged to serve as “Children’s Champions” and raise donations on behalf of Nationwide Children’s. In the past four years, between participants’ fundraising efforts, corporate and community sponsorships and matches by the Marathon board, more than $4.5 million has been raised for Nationwide Children’s. To register to become a Children’s Champion, please visit
Partners that have committed to sponsoring a Miracle Mile along the 2016 Marathon route include: Platinum Sponsors Abercrombie & Fitch, L Brands, Nationwide and The Columbus Dispatch; Gold Sponsor Cardinal Health; and Silver Sponsors Alliance Data, Big Lots, CampusParc, Clif Bar, EAS Sports Nutrition, Fifth Third Bank, Germain Automotive Partnership, Kohl’s Department Stores, Kroger,, Panera, PNC, Subway, The Superior Group, Vaughn Industries, and WBNS-10 TV.
Corporate or community organizations interested in becoming a partner in this year’s event may contact Morgen Spon with Nationwide Children’s Hospital Foundation at (614) 355-5419. To read more about the Patient Champions’ stories and to support Nationwide Children’s, visit
The 37th Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon will be held on Sunday, October 16, 2016 and will have a capacity of 6,000 full marathoners and 12,000 participants in the ½ Marathon. The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon is the 17th largest marathon in the United States and one of the top marathons to qualify runners for the Boston Marathon. For more information, visit
The 2016 Patient Champions:
Mile 1: Breanna McGrady, 14, Crohns induced Pseudotumor Myositis, Clyde, OH 43410 
Theme: Breanna’s Battle Knock Out
Mile 2: Tristen Cooper, 9, Multiple Diagnoses, Marietta, OH 45750
Theme: Just Keep Truckin’ & Never Give Up 
Mile 3: Riley Muller, 11, Mucopolysaccharidosis Type II (MPS II), Marysville, OH 43040  Theme: Sonic the HedgeHog
Mile 4: Gracelynn Dutton, 3, Spina Bifida, Delaware, OH 43015 
Theme: Minnie Mouse
Mile 5: Alex Steckman, 21, Aortic Stenosis, and Coarctation of the Aorta, Westerville, OH 43081 – Theme: Strength 
Mile 6: Lyla Horsley, 9, Asthma, Portsmouth, OH 45662 
Theme: Unicorns & Rainbows
Mile 7: Grant Loechler, 4, 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome, Columbus, OH 43221  
Theme: The Amazing Spider Grant & His Super Friends
Mile 8: Millie Johnson, 5, Arthrogryposis, Distal Type I, Upper Arlington, OH 43220  Theme: Frozen: Anna/Elsa
Mile 9: Louis Wood, Traumatic Brain Injury, 16 Granville, OH 43023 
Theme: Music
Mile 10: Jessica Acton, 15, Hypokalemic Periodic Paralysis, Dola, OH 45835  
Theme: The Warrior Within
Mile 11: Angel Mile
Mile 12: Jude Hummer, 10, Addison’s Disease, ALD, Columbus, OH 43214  
Theme: Jude’s Jump Shot
Mile 13: Joel Buyer, 8, Cerebral Palsy, Washington Court House, OH 43160  
Theme: Music
Mile 14: Laila Albanese, 4, Astrocytoma of Spinal Cord, Chillicothe, OH 45601
Theme: Disney 
Mile 15: Mason Dum, 15, Type 1 Diabetes, Stoutsville, OH 43154 
Theme: MARVELous Super Heroes
Mile 16: Aaron Welch, 9, Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, Epilepsy and Cerebral Palsy, Chillicothe, OH 45601 –  Theme: Ohio State
Mile 17: Benjamin Harberts, 4, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Pataskala, OH 43062 
Theme: Clickety-Clack Trains
Mile 18: Encore Mile
Mile 19: Melanie Wheeler, 13, Myxopapillary Ependymoma, Galion, OH 44833 
Theme: Lilo & Stitch
Mile 20: Jacob Carlino, 18, Ewing’s Sarcoma, Powell, OH 43065  
Theme: Jake’s One Man Band
Mile 21: Evan Durant, 6, Double Outlet Right Ventricle with Transposition of the Great Arteries, Zanesville, OH 43701 – Theme: How to Train Your Dragon
Mile 22: Layla Graham, 6, Batten’s Disease, Columbus, OH 43212  
Theme: Bobcats Against Batten 
Mile 23: Alyssa Turner, 19, Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis, Westerville, OH 43801
Theme: Hollywood
Mile 24: Killian Madrid, 6, Severe Prematurity, Reynoldsburg, OH 43068  
Theme: Incredible Hulk
Mile 25: Ella Wintringer, 8, Colonic Neuropathy, Orchard Park, N.Y. 14127  
Theme: cinderELLA’s Motility Mile
Mile 26: Arjun Satyapriya, 5, Progressive Sensorineuronal Hearing Loss, Powell, OH 43065 Theme – The Fast & The Furious
About Nationwide Children’s Hospital
Named to the Top 10 Honor Roll on U.S. News & World Report’s 2016-17 list of “America’s Best Children’s Hospitals,” Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of America’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric healthcare systems providing wellness, preventive, diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitative care for infants, children and adolescents, as well as adult patients with congenital disease. Nationwide Children’s has a staff of more than 11,000 providing state-of-the-art pediatric care during more than 1.2 million patient visits annually. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s physicians train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric specialists. The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded freestanding pediatric research facilities. Nationwide Children’s remains true to the original mission since its founding in 1892 of providing care regardless of a family’s ability to pay. More information is available at

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Nationwide Children's Hospital
700 Children's Drive Columbus, Ohio 43205 614.722.2000