COLUMBUS (WCMH) — For the past 15 years, Maren Roth has honored her father’s memory through the Jack Roth Rock ‘N Run.
The 5k raises money each year for lung cancer research. It’s the very disease that killed her father, an avid runner and non-smoker, at the age of 57. So far, this grassroots effort has raised $1.5 million through community participations and sponsorships.
“Initially it was my dad. It was who he was. It was the type of person he was. Even posthumously, he was bringing people together, said Maren. “And I think after people felt like it wasn’t just him, it was this community get together, this family. Something that was really special.”
The run has also given Maren and her children a special connection to her father.
“What’s so amazing now having kids of my own that he never got to meet is that his face is on this t-shirt, and we see this t-shirt everywhere. So, I always got this Jack Roth in the wild. My daughter now who is 5 will see it and she will say ‘Papa Jack’. She knows and so it’s a happy thing for me to keep his memory alive,” said Maren.
Last year, the race was canceled because of the pandemic, and this year, the race has gone virtual but many of the things people love will still be a part of the event like the t-shirts, playlist, and Max’s Track Dash.
“We want it to feel like the Jack Roth run. It’s a special race,” said Maren.
Starting Sunday June 13th, you will have a week to walk or run the 5k. You are encouraged to share pictures on social using #jackrothtogether. To signup visit http://jackrothfund.org/