ThumbsUp

An I'mPossible Partnership

ThumbsUp International is a non profit organization which enables athletes to participate in endurance sports events such as open ocean water swims, cycling, running races and triathlons, regardless of their disability, by matching athletes according to their capabilities. Founded by Kerry Gruson and Cristina Ramirez, ThumbsUp International has become a fixture on the local running, triathlon and endurance sports scene. Kerry will be present at the Run Club's practices so children can learn from, and work directly with, one of the most inspirational local Miamians.

 

Kerry Gruson

Kerry Gruson was 26 years old when her life changed.  A Harvard Graduate and rising reporting star (following both of her parents legendary journalistic careers), she developed her own assignment and wanted to cover the end of the Vietnam War.  On her way to that war torn country, she stopped in Hawaii where she was set to interview a Green Beret who had fought in the war.  During the interview, the soldier had a PTSD flashback, strangled her, and left her for dead.  She survived the ordeal, however not without becoming disabled due to the lack of oxygen to her brain.  Kerry has minimal movement in her legs and arms, her head is permanently slanted to the side and her voice is soft.  However, don't be fooled by her appearance or her frightening story.  She does not live her life as a victim.  On the contrary, Kerry is a feisty, brave, and defines being POSSIBLE.  She continued to work after her incident for the Miami News and New York Times, she became a competitive sailor, runner, triathlete and has competed in signature events such as the Miami & Chicago Marathons, Ironman Florida, and the South Beach Triathlon. You can follow ThumbsUp adventures on Facebook, or read more about Kerry's story here, here and here.

 

Working Together

Trying Something Different

We are challenging children to redefine what is possible. When they first meet Kerry, children might believe she isn't able to do the things they do, such as being part of the Run Club.  Yet, working directly with her they are learning a valuable lesson in teamwork, trust, and responsibility.

We are very grateful to Kerry for sharing her story, her generosity, and her bravery ... because being taken for a ride by elementary school children can sometimes get bumpy!

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Kerry was part of the class, and integrated in all exercises.
Kerry racing with our children at the Superintendents 5k