A dozen supporters from throughout Nevada and California have joined together to run the Reno Tahoe Odyssey Relay as team “Elisa’s Angels” to raise money for Jon and Elisa Storke.
The relay team will run the 178-mile course on Friday-Saturday.
Starting in Downtown Reno along the Truckee River, the relay travels through the Sierra Nevada and along Lake Tahoe and circles back to Reno.
With the motto “Some Angels Fly, We Run,” the team has set up a fundraising webpage and Facebook page to allow people to donate and cheer the team on.
Team Captain, Investigator Nadine Chrzanowski works with Jon Storke at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.
“The RTO itself is synonymous with Elisa’s journey,” Chrzanowski said. “It has ups and downs and takes a special kind of will to run. Each leg is a new challenge and the only way to finish the race is to take it one leg at a time. To look at the race as a whole would be too daunting; mile-by-mile, or in Elisa’s case, day-by-day, is the only way to handle it. We are running this race as a tribute to her refusal to quit, her resolve to stay strong no matter how tough the journey gets. This race is a reflection of Elisa. This is why we are running.”
Elisa Storke was diagnosed with Stage 4 Metastatic Melanoma in 2013. She is currently undergoing extensive treatments that leave her at times unable to care for her family with the energy and strength that she would normally have. With Elisa unable to work, the family faces extensive medical bills that are building. The team’ goals are two-fold: to raise funds to help the Storkes with medical bills and to raise awareness, support, and positive energy for Elisa as she faces her diagnosis head-on. For the runners, the relay race symbolizes a small portion of the challenges Elisa and her family face.
Donations can be made online at www.ElisasAngelsRTO2014.myevent.com. Every penny raised will go directly to the family, as the team has already paid their entry fees. The site accepts donations as little as $5. The team Facebook page allows the public to follow the runners throughout the relay and post words of encouragement to Elisa and her family at www.facebook.com/runforelisa.
The team expressed appreciation for the businesses that supported the effort: Carson Valley Medical Center, CustomInk, JT Basque Bar & Dining Room and Peak Nutrition.