Terrace’s Joe Pelletier tackling two half-marathons this fall to raise money for Canuck Place Children’s Hospice.
Recovering from a minor foot-tendon injury in August, he “wasn’t quite ready to do another marathon yet,” he said.
He will race the Vancouver Rock N’ Roll half marathon on October 25.
Three weeks later on November 25, he will race the Las Vegas Rock N’ Roll half marathon.
With the races in Vancouver and Vegas, Pelletier says part of his reason is it’s “a good excuse to go on vacation.”
But it is also to raise money for a good cause. In the past few years, he has raised $1,600 for the Michael J. Fox Foundation, and almost $1,900 for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind.
This year he runs for the Canuck Place Children’s Hospice.
His fundraising campaign kicked off with a $1,000 donation from Rio Tinto in Kitimat, and his goal is to raise $3,000.
“I don’t have any personal connection [to the cause],” said Pelletier.
“I wanted to do a children’s charity, and I have a lot of connections in the hockey world… It just seemed like a natural fit.”
Pelletier wasn’t always a runner.
In fact, he only started five years ago, inspired by his friend and runner Richard Kriegl, who he bumped into five years ago after Richard had just finished a 19-kilometre run.
Pelletier told Richard he wished he could do that, and Richard told him “you can!”
“I started running that day,” Pelletier said.
“Those words really are powerful words. It really inspired me.”
Pelletier started running on Howe Creek “where no one could see,” and slowly graduated to local trail races and then marathons.
In 2014, he decided to run for charities and “do some good with all this.”
“It’s a selfish thing, running 300 kilometres in a month, it’s a lot of time wasted in many ways,” he said.
“[I wanted to] do a good thing and set a good example for my nephews, the kids, and whoever is watching.”
Pelletier is training in Terrace until the middle of October, running 70 to 80 kilometres a week, and looking for donations as he builds toward the races.
He has Canucks memorabilia and gift certificates for a massage from the Revolution Health and Wellness to randomly giveaway to supporters.
To donate, find “The Charity Runner” on Facebook.