MaryBeth Dryer

Race AFSP 2018


“Be light in darkness, a beacon for another in a storm. It is time we break the silence on human suffering, depression, mental illness,  and the taboo that surrounds the darkness of the human experience. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that"

Dear Friend,

On October 7, 2018, I will be running my first marathon for a cause I am passionate about. I began running 22 years ago, and it is my place where I connect with a deeper part of myself, connect with God (the Universe), meditate, and give thanks. I am running for the American Foundation For Suicide Prevention, to raise awareness on a cause I have personally been affected by-- suicide. Losing my Grandfather, and almost losing another family member who is a soul mate (thank God we got to them in time) were sobering moments. I will never forget those moments when I received those phone calls and a piece of my heart was forever broken. My Grandfather served in WW2 in the Pacific and suffered from PTSD for decades-sadly back then there was not awareness and resources. He suffered for decades. He was an incredible human and knew how to make everyone laugh and smile. He was a gift. Roughly 22 American veterans commit suicide daily. I am gathering names of those who have been lost to suicide/suicide attempts.  I will have those names written all over my body as I run the marathon. My grandfather, Robert Rankin will be written over my heart, along with my family member I almost lost. I will carry those names I receive from all of you, honoring their lives/spirit/and their suffering throughout my journey running in the Chicago marathon. When I feel like I cannot go on in the marathon, I will go on for all of those who felt alone in the dark, felt there was no way out, and ultimately took their life/or have tried taking their life. 

 I am doing this run for a cause to create a better place for all of us in this world. Happiness is our birthright. Our life is a precious gift. None of us need to live alone in our suffering. There are people who will love us back into the light. The human experience is joyful, beautiful, filled with happiness, and is a gift.

 All humans experience chapters filled with elements of sadness/darkness/trauma/mental    illness/suffering/despair/loss/illness/crisis/loneliness. Every single one of us has felt the aforementioned emotions at one time or another. For some, they need a beacon of light to know their way out of the storm. Oftentimes those who are suffering with depression/mood disorders turn to alcohol, drugs, and other mechanisms of addiction to numb the pain, albeit temporarily, only compounding the issue. 

We are all in this together. We share this One Planet. We must love one another out of the darkness. I am passionate about suicide awareness and mental health. I believe all of us must fight to be mentally/spiritually/emotionally/physically healthy and it takes a village for all of us to be the best version of ourselves. Please text me (734)678-0053 with names of those who you have lost to suicide/or nearly lost. I will keep the names private and carry those names with me, on me, as I run the marathon. #Kate Spade #AVICCI #Anthony Bourdain #AlexanderMcQueen #RobinWilliams

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), which has the mission to save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicide.  The money I raise will help AFSP fund scientific research, educate the public about mood disorders and suicide prevention, promote policies and legislation that impact suicide, and support survivors of suicide loss and people at risk.  I am running for all of us that have been touched in some way by suicide, depression, despair, trauma, agonising chapters in life—a part of the human condition we keep in the dark. We all need light sometimes, sometimes we need to be light, sometimes we need to shine bright.  I  hope to deserve the title of champion in the oldest and greatest sense of the word, honouring the lives of those who felt/feel they cannot go on.

Please help me reach my fundraising goal. Even a dollar donation is appreciated and not judged (it’s more about awareness and honouring those who felt alone in the dark). All of us have battles and struggles and society tells us we need to be perfect and happy all the time, which compounds our suffering in bad times. Let’s shed light on a taboo subject and collectively heal.  Any contribution will help the work of AFSP and all donations are 100% tax deductible.  Donating online is safe and easy.  To make an online donation please click the "Donate Now" button at the top of this page. I will match dollar for dollar, all of the donations I receive up to $5000.

Thank you for visiting my fundraising page and please wish me luck completing my training and getting to the starting line healthy.  I will take it from there.