This fall, tens of thousands of runners will line up at marathon starting lines across the nation. They'll run for a multitude of charitable causes, raising money and awareness for everything from MS to veterans' care to breast cancer.
Not Andrew Griffith.
Griffith, a 34-year-old veterinary technician from Greensboro, North Carolina, is registered for the Mount Airy (N.C.) Marathon next month. And when he toes the line on race morning, Dumb Runner has learned, he'll be running for one person and one person alone: Andrew Griffith.
Contacted for comment, Griffith confirmed that he will not be raising funds for disease prevention and research; disadvantaged children; abandoned or abused animals; environmental protection; homelessness; adult literacy; hunger relief; kidney research; disaster aid; hospice providers; clean water; suicide prevention; elder care; or autism awareness.
"I'm just doing the marathon," Griffith said, adding that he volunteers twice a month at a nearby food bank and recently donated $100 for hurricane relief efforts. "I'm hoping to run sub-3:20."
Runners reacted to the news with revulsion and disbelief.
"Wow," said George Lindsey, a three-time marathon finisher who has run for a variety of cancer charities. "So this guy is for cancer, then?"
Hope Summers, a volunteer running coach for Team Patriot Paws, which raises money for wounded K9 veterans, expressed similar sentiments.
"Through Team Patriot Paws, our marathoners have raised over $86,000 for brave military dogs who have been wounded in action," she said. "But I guess that wouldn't mean anything to (Griffith)."
"Running a marathon just for... What? Your own personal glory?" she added. "What a selfish a******."
Notified of Griffith's intentions, officials with the Mount Airy Marathon issued the following statement on the event's Facebook page:
We were saddened to learn of a registrant who plans to run (the marathon) next month despite having no ties to a charity or cause of any kind. As proud supporters of awareness, this concerns us deeply.
We are in the process of contacting this individual to determine next steps.