Raleigh, N.C. — A Wake County high school math teacher is adding up the miles, training for the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon next month in Raleigh. Adrienne Core says it was her father's battle with cancer that inspired her as a younger woman and fuels her desire to run on Team V, the group running for The V Foundation for Cancer Research.
Core's story starts with her father, Charles.
"He was like my best friend," she said. "My mom has always joked that I was kind of like his 'mini-me' growing up."
When Core was 11, her dad was diagnosed with stage four multiple myeloma, a blood cancer. He lived for eight years with the disease and died in 2006.
Inspired by his battle, Core rose to become Miss North Carolina in 2010.
"Life is all about dealing with the cards you are dealt. They aren't always going to be fair, but it's all about how you change what you've been given to affect other people," she said.
In her role as Miss North Carolina and now as a teacher and volleyball coach, she has become an advocate for cancer research. So it was an easy decision to run with Team V. The V Foundation is a beneficiary of the Rock 'n' Roll Raleigh races.
"It's people like Adrienne that are going to help us do what we need to do to fund cancer research," said Katie Sweet, communications director for The V Foundation. So far, the foundation has granted more than $14 million for research projects in North Carolina alone.
Core sees research investment making a difference. She had a friend diagnosed with the same cancer as her father, but he's in remission now.
"It makes you wonder, what if my dad was still alive today," she said.
"That gives me hope for other people that research is making a difference."
Those who don't run can support Team V by volunteering on race weekend, April 9 and 10.