RSVP Montgomery

Run Bell Run

NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2014

Kristi Gates

One thousand miles in one year to raise $50,000. That’s the challenge Montgomerian Scott Bell is tackling to raise money for cystic fibrosis. Scott has CF and knows firsthand the challenges that come with the disease. 

About 30,000 Americans have CF, which affects the glands that produce mucus and sweat, causing mucus to become thick and sticky. As mucus builds up, it can block airways in the lungs and make it easier for bacteria to grow, resulting in difficulty breathing and frequent lung infections. It also prevents necessary enzymes from reaching the intestines, which the body needs in order to digest nutrients in food. In addition, CF causes individuals to lose large amounts of salt when they sweat, which can cause an unhealthy imbalance of minerals in the body leading to dehydration, fatigue, heat strokes and in rare cases, death. 

Scott acknowledges the burning lungs and difficulty breathing some days, but he’s a regular runner in order to keep his lungs healthy. Even so, Scott says that this is a lot more running than he is accustomed to. He’s not letting those challenges slow him down though. At the time of this article, he’s already at 325 miles heading into his fifth month, and has raised $25,000. 

That money is going to go straight to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Scott says, “They do incredible work to help patients gain access to critical drugs, and they’re vital to the development of new treatments.” Scott points to the foundation’s success and tremendous strides in the fight against CF. “The average life expectancy for someone with CF is 38. This is incredible considering that when I was born, it was 15,” he says. “I see life-changing treatments on the horizon, so we just have to continue raising money.” 

Scott’s wife Tiffany says when she first heard about his plan, “I honestly thought it was a crazy idea, but it didn’t surprise me at all. Scott is not afraid to step way out of his comfort zone when it comes to raising money and awareness for CF.” Along the way, Tiffany has cheered him on and worked hard to get the word out about his efforts on social media. She says, “Scott has received many messages from patients, parents and others showing their support and sharing stories of how his dedication against all odds has inspired them. I couldn't be more proud of him, his personal fight against CF and fight for others with CF.” 

Scott says, “Between the media coverage, and the contributions and moral support from so many, it’s been a truly rewarding experience.” Running the miles may be totally up to Scott, but he’s asking anyone interested in helping him reach his $50,000 goal to visit www.runbellrun.com to make a pledge and learn more about CF.

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