353 miles for cancer

By Michelle Costanza

October 7, 2013 Updated Oct 7, 2013 at 11:49 PM EDT

Owego, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Torrential downpours kept many inside on Monday, but one Maryland man ran straight through the storm in the name of charity.

Benjamin Hall's aunt and uncle lost their battles to cancer. With statistics to show that close to 50 percent of men and 30 percent of women will develop some form of the disease in their lifetime, according to the American Cancer Society, it is not an uncommon hardship to face.

The way Hall is facing it however, is uncommon.

"I got this idea in my head about a year ago. I wrote it down and it just became something I had to accomplish. It almost consumed me up until about nine days ago when I finally began," explained Hall.

To raise awareness for prevention and money for the American Cancer Society, Hall's task is a 353-mile run from his home in Manchester, Md., to his deceased uncle's house in Fulton, N.Y.

The 13-day journey for charity consists of 13 stops and only two rest days. Hall covers distances from 23 to nearly 32 miles a day -- on foot. That is approximately a marathon a day, for almost two weeks straight.

He runs solo and pushes a stroller with a duffel bag, consisting of only the bare necessities -- a change of clothes and a few toiletries.

Hall has two goals in mind for the incredible journey: To raise $5,000 for the ACS, and to encourage awareness for cancer and overall fitness and health.

Though his task may seem daunting, he said it's all about mind over matter.

"Two years ago, I was 250 lbs, I could not run one mile, I could not do one pull up. So if people are discouraged due to their weight, hopefully they can take a look at me as an example. If you really set your mind to something, you can accomplish anything," said Hall.

An overnight stay after his 31.9 mile leg from Montrose to Owego on Monday will only be followed by lacing up his sneakers once again Tuesday morning, to pound the pavement to Ithaca.

Hall plans to reach his finish line on Saturday afternoon, where he has invited the community to join him for the final steps.

"Meet me at the (Fulton) city limits at 1 p.m. I will be there. Run the last three miles with me to my uncle's house. Run, walk, bike, roller blade. Whatever you can do to get out and get active," Hall said.

Through donations, Hall has already raised $3,255 of his $5,000 goal. For more information on how to support his journey, visit his Crush Cancer Campaign website.