Manitoba

Buttons for Jo: Winnipeggers selling buttons to honour member of running community

A group of Winnipeggers is selling buttons for brain cancer research in honour of a valued member of the running community.

Joanne Schiewe was given 18 months to live when she was diagnosed with glioblastoma

A group of Winnipeggers are selling buttons for brain cancer research in honour of Joanne Schiewe. (See Mike Run/Blog)

A group of Winnipeggers is selling buttons for brain cancer research in honour of a valued member of the running community.

Joanne Schiewe was given 18 months to live when she was diagnosed with glioblastoma in February last year.

It was the same diagnosis as Tragically Hip's Gord Downie and Schiewe made it to the Winnipeg concert, but now she is fighting for each new hour.

"I've run miles and miles and miles with Joanne and I've come to know her and admire her as a very good friend," said Michael Bennett, director for Ted's Run for Literacy.

Schiewe was on the run's committee for five years. She submitted her resignation because of her illness.

Bennett said he created a tag of "JO" for his Facebook profile to show his friend support, but soon other people started doing the same.

"Within a couple of days, everyone seemed to grab on to that because they all wanted a piece of Jo," he said. "They all wanted to show Jo the love and support they have."

Joanne Schiewe, 35, and her partner Jared Spier. (Lyzaville Sale/CBC)

Bennett said he figured why not make that support something tangible. The Ted's Run for Literacy made 500 buttons and offered them for sale, with all of the proceeds going to the Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada.

"Our original goal was a couple thousand dollars but we're certainly on target," he said.

"We've only had them for sale for a couple of days and they've just gone like wildfire."

The final amount raised will be presented to Schiewe and her family at the run on Sept. 25.

Bennett said the campaign's response shows what an impact Schiewe made to the running community and the province.

"It's people like Joanne who … gave us the ability to keep on going," he said, referencing the charity run. "We were almost swallowed up a couple of times by larger events but Joanne's so passionate and such a hard worker that we get caught up in her energy."

Buttons are for sale for a $5 minimum donation by contacting tedsrunforliteracy@gmail.com.

Corrections

  • A previous version of this story said the funds would go to Brain Canada. Organizers later said they misnamed the organization and the funds are going to the Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada.
    Aug 31, 2016 2:21 PM CT

With files from Erin Brohman

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