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In memory of Stephanie

Friends, family holding inaugural run in Fort Augustus

By Andrew Wagstaff
Maritime Runner
Aug. 10, 2017

FORT AUGUSTUS, P.E.I. – She’s been gone for three years, but her friends and family in Ontario and now Prince Edward Island are making sure she is never forgotten.
The inaugural Stephanie (Doyle) Grady Memorial Walk/Run will take place in Fort Augustus on Saturday, Aug. 12, modeled after a successful similar event that takes place each year near Cornwall, Ont.
“After seeing the success of the one in Ontario, some friends and family of Stephanie here got together and said we could do that too,” said Melissa MacDonald, one of her childhood friends on the island.

The inaugural Stephanie (Doyle) Grady Memorial Walk/Run will take place in Fort Augustus, P.E.I. on Saturday, Aug. 12.

Photo courtesy of Melissa MacDonald

“So we just kind of found a route Stephanie used to run herself when she was home in the summer, and thought that would be a good sport to do it. We got some more people together, and now we’re having a race.”
Grady grew up in Auburn, P.E.I., just outside of Fort Augustus. After getting married, she moved with her husband to his hometown in Ontario, where they were bot teachers, and they returned home to Prince Edward Island each summer.
A mother of three, she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer in 2013, and passed away in May of 2014.
“It was just a really big shock when it all happened… she was a teacher and a mom and a million different things,” said MacDonald, her friend since Grade 7. “Before she passed away, a group of us here had some fundraisers for her to help with her cancer treatment, and she kind of pushed us all in this way for awhile.”
Money raised from the upcoming walk/run will go towards a bursary established in Grady’s name at Charlottetown Rural High School, as well as initiatives started in her memory, such as donating homemade pillowcases to sick children and children of ill parents.
The event will include a 10K run, a 5K run, and a 2K kids and family walk/run over a scenic, rolling route through the country. Starting and finishing at the Fort Augustus recreational centre, the 10K route will turn around at Grady’s parents’ farm.
Response to the event has been very positive, according to MacDonald.
“We weren’t expecting a huge turnout because it’s our first time, and we thought we’d just get the word out this year,” she said. “But, the last time we checked, we had over 100 runners registered, over 30 of them in the 10K. It’s awesome and surprising, and we’re really excited about it.”
For more on the Stephanie (Doyle) Grady Memorial Walk/Run, visit here .