Race will benefit foundation to help children with diabetes

Nick Allen and Charlie Stamboulian


Dec. 26, 2013  PLYMOUTH EAGLE.


Race will benefit foundation to help children with diabetes


Jack Frost is about to find out just how tough, and generous, runners can be.

Three avid runners, Nick Allen, Charlie Stamboulian and Kyle Meteyer are organizing the Rock the Clock 5K run through downtown Plymouth planned for Dec. 29.

The run will benefit the Michigan Diabetes Children’s Association (MIDICHA) camp in Fenton, which provides typical summer activities for children, but is designed to help those with Type I diabetes. Children who attend the camp are also counseled about nutrition and how to handle their diabetes effectively.

Gerad Meteyer
Gerad Meteyer

Meteyer’s brother, Gerad, who suffered from Type I diabetes, attended the camp as a child and worked as a counselor there as an adult until his death from a low blood sugar incident in 2007.

“It was his home away from home,” Meteyer said.

Following Gerad’s death at 34, his family established a charity in his memory that provides scholarships for underprivileged diabetic youths to attend Camp Midicha. The Gerad Meteyer Foundation is a 501(c)3 IRS-registered charity.

To help fund the charity, Allen, a 1999 graduate of Plymouth Salem High School and a former All-American Cross Country runner at Wayne State University, and Stamboulian, a high school classmate of Meteyer’s and also a former Wayne State University Cross Country runner, decided a race under less than ideal weather conditions might appeal to runners.

The pair claim that navigating the elements is one of the “cool” parts of the race as they have designed it.

“Almost anyone can run a 5K in the summer, but the real challenge is standing up to Jack Frost and saying, ‘I am going to be fit and finish this race, no matter what!'” the pair said.

All the entry fees and other proceeds from the Rock the Clock race will be donated to the Gerad Meteyer Foundation.

The men have secured a number of local sponsors, including Kilwin’s of Plymouth, Running Fit, Faurecia International, Tricovery Massage and Fitness of Novi, Sun Heating and Air Conditioning, Sideways of Plymouth, Jimmy Johns, Dunkin’ Donuts, Sun and Snow Sports of Plymouth, and Greek Islands Restaurant of Plymouth.

Stamboulian and Allen have invested hundreds of hours into organizing the event, Meteyer said, having to recruit sponsors, secure permits, enlist participants, plot out a course, find volunteers and all the other challenges of planning a 5K by themselves.

“The hope is that on race day, participants can enjoy themselves with a walk or run through the brisk December weather,” Meteyer, who was the head coach of the Salem High School track team for seven years, said.

Race registration is available at rocktheclockrun.com. There are prizes for each different age group, from youth up to senior citizens, and people may walk or run. The race begins and ends at Kellogg Park in the heart of downtown and Kilwin’s is providing gourmet hot chocolate for participants, Meteyer, who now teaches English at Salem High School, said.

“There will be a warming tent, too,” he added.

Meteyer said the event is all for a good cause and if 1,000 runners participate, it will mean several dozen scholarships for children to attend Camp Midicha.

“If we can positively affect just one youth who is struggling with physical or emotional issues related to his or her Type I Diabetes, then we’ve achieved our goal,” he said.

|News Plymouth Michigan

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