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Run/walk helps raise funds for 4-year-old with leukemia

More than 100 students, staff and community members participated in the Team Ian Run, an annual event held in honor of Ian Alves, a West Fargo student and athlete who died of cancer in 2012. Photo by Josh Francis

The West Fargo community came together Saturday morning to participate in a run/walk benefit for the 4-year-old daughter of a West Fargo teacher who was diagnosed with cancer.

More than 100 students, staff and community members participated in the Team Ian Run, an annual event held in honor of Ian Alves, a West Fargo student and athlete who died of cancer in 2012.

“Once he passed away, we started doing it in his honor, and then we’ve either donated the money to cancer research, or we’ve donated it to children with pediatric cancer around the area or in the school,” said West Fargo High School cross country coach Brad Amundson.

Many of the runners participating in the event were cross country and track and field athletes, many of whom were dressed up because the event fell on Halloween this year. More than 100 people showed up.

“It means that we have a strong community, and by having a strong community it means that we can support each other. Whether we go through a tough time or a good time, we’re always there for one another,” said West Fargo senior Noah Schock, a cross country and track athlete.

The money raised at the event, about $4,500, will go to help Braelyn Peterson, 4, the daughter of West Fargo High physical education teacher Nikki Peterson. Braelyn has been diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

“This young child that is going through her cancer, she has the potential to be a Packer, so we want to always stay together, and keep our Packers alive,” Schock said.

Amundson said because the run/walk fell on Halloween, more people came out to participate in the run. He said the fact the money is going to help a West Fargo teacher and her daughter also brought out more people this year.

The event is in its fifth year and it has raised more than $50,000 in that time, Amundson said.

Josh Francis

Josh is a general assignment reporter for The Forum and the sports reporter for the West Fargo Pioneer. Josh previously interned as a reporter for the Reading Eagle in Reading, Penn. and worked as a freelance reporter for the Orange County Register in California. He welcomes story ideas via email or phone. Have a comment to share about a story? Letters to the editor should include author’s name, address and phone number. Generally, letters should be no longer than 250 words. All letters are subject to editing. Send to letters@forumcomm.com.

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