Anthony Mennillo is not one for doing things by halves. Despite his MS diagnosis, in fact, as a direct result of it, and the fact that he lives 17,000 km away in Adelaide, Australia, he decided to take part in the New York City Marathon in November 2016.
A phenomenal team
What’s more, 23 of his friends and family were there with him. It is incredible that so many people were prepared to travel that distance to support him, right? Well, they did more than that. They all ran the race with him.
Some of the team were established runners but others were not. They were proud just to make it round the course before the road sweepers could catch up with them the next morning.
The team all did it because they adore Anthony. And, Anthony did it because, in his own words, he owes his life to OMS.
Diagnosed in 2008, at the age of 33, Anthony was devastated to learn that the symptoms he’d been experiencing were the work of MS.
Denial, anger and shame followed, as did the fear of how his active role as a father to two very young children may become affected.
Six months passed and all was very far from well. But then, a colleague of his told him about an interesting interview she’d heard on the radio.
It was with a doctor who had MS himself, but who remained entirely well as a result of changes he had made to his lifestyle.
You know where this is going. This was, of course, Professor George Jelinek, and it was the first Anthony had heard of him.
An internet search ensued, as did the purchase of Professor Jelinek’s book, and despite it being difficult to face at first, Anthony finally read it cover to cover and began to feel the dark cloud lifting.
Drastic dietary changes were made, an OMS retreat was attended, and seven years later in 2016, Anthony not had not only remained relapse-free but also believed he was the healthiest he had ever been.
Going for 'the best' marathon
So fit and well clearly, that marathon running crossed his mind. And so grateful to OMS, that using such an event to raise money to continue OMS’s work became the objective.
Over lunch one day, Anthony had mentioned to his cousin Tony that he was interested in running a marathon. Fair enough, Tony thought, and asked him which of the Australian courses he had in mind.
When he learned that Anthony was in fact thinking of entering the NYC marathon, the biggest, most popular marathon in the world, Tony was surprised.
Antony explained, “Well… I reckon I’ve only got one in me, so we might as well make it the best one there is.”
The rest, as they say, is history...
Anthony and his team of friends and family completed the NYC marathon and raised an astonishing AUD $150,000 for OMS!
Thank you to the entire team and all their supporters for making this phenomenal goal a reality!