Benjy Metry, of Houston, may be only 10 years old, but he’s miles ahead of other fourth graders when it comes to philanthropy.
“My dad died a couple years ago,” explains Benjy. “He really loved to run, so I thought it would be a good idea to run the Houston Half Marathon, in his honor, and to set up a fundraiser for cancer research.”
Benjy’s father, Adam, passed away after a brief but courageous battle with esophageal cancer in December 2015. One of his greatest passions was running, a love he instilled in his son.
“He ran a lot of marathons,” says Benjy. “He was a lot faster than me.”
Benjy set an initial goal of $200. In just one month, he surpassed that goal almost 85-fold, raising nearly $17,000 for cancer research at MD Anderson.
On Jan. 14, Benjy completed the Houston Half Marathon with his mom, Denise Metry, in two hours and 42 minutes.
“I was just so proud of him,” recalls Denise. “It couldn’t have been a better day. I just imagined and hoped that Adam was watching, and I know he was so proud too.”
But perhaps Benjy’s biggest accomplishment was setting an example for a new generation of fourth-grade fundraisers and cancer fighters.
“So many people donated ― everyone from friends and family and just everybody I didn’t even know. It was really cool,” says Benjy. “Thank you to all of them.”