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Thursday, June 16, 2005

Marathon for the Fisher House Landstuhl
Marathon for the Fisher House Landstuhl


My name is Norm Raynal; I am a 64-year old diabetic who works for the Defense Commissary Agency. I have been wondering, perhaps like many of you, how to stay healthy and do something beneficial with my off-duty time. I tried several different activities, but nothing seemed "right" for meâ?¦too time-consuming, limited exercise, and especially no sense of feeling like I was doing something worthwhileâ?¦nothing seemed to "fit.â?? I told a good friend about my dilemma and she suggested I consider volunteering at the Fisher House. I had no idea what the Fisher House was. When I saw an ad looking for volunteers to help the Fisher House clean up after the holidays, I thought about her suggestion and decided to give it a try.

The manager was kind enough to take some time from her busy day to explain what the Fisher House provides for service members and their families. I learned that in our area, there are two Fisher Houses collocated to the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center that provide a â??home away from homeâ?? for families assisting wounded service members or who are themselves receiving medical care at Landstuhl. During 2004, these two houses assisted over 900 families.

The Fisher Houses depend on donations to maintain their operation. To support this worthwhile cause, I will walk five 42.9 marathons and ask each of you to pledge a dollar amount for each kilometer I walk or a dollar amount for each marathon I walk. No walk â?¦no donation.

Kathy Gregory provided me with more ideas and suggestions and along with another friend, Berndt Schwarz, we put this web site together. Karin Hand did the final edit so Kathy Reed could do the English - German translation what we will post in the near future. Thanks to my friends, we are able to reach out to the community for support.

Your donation after the first, third and fifth marathon will directly go to the service members and their families who stay at the Landstuhl Fisher Houses.

I ask you to help those who fight for our freedom by being generous with your pledge.

As the Manager of the Landstuhl Fisher Houses I welcome the support you will provide us. We do not receive any government funding and our operating costs come from donations and the $10 room fee. The Fisher House Foundation that is listed on the Combined Federal Campaign is a separate Fund that solicits money for building new Fisher Houses, supporting existing Fisher Houses and helping individual families in need. Charitable activities like this 5 X marathon help us meet our donation goal as well as spread the word that the Landstuhl Fisher Houses are here to help our families in need. We estimate $155,000 will be needed this year, so we thank you for your pledge which will help us provide care and support. You will be helping to keep a family unit together and assisting each family through their medical crisis by giving us the ability to provide â??compassionate care beyond the call of dutyâ??.

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