More than 40,000 people had planned to run in this year's New York City Marathon. Late this evening many of the runners found that the race was canceled.
Juan Cardenas left town this morning for New York City. His flight stopped in Chicago and at that point the race was still on.
During his flight from Chicago to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg canceled the marathon.
"We landed in New York City, I got a message from one of my friends telling me that it had been canceled," Cardenas said. "I didn't believe him. I thought he was joking and checked the news and within three minutes I got a message that yeah, it had just been canceled."
Cardenas understands the reasoning for canceling the race. He just wishes the mayor would have made the decision a few days earlier.
He said, "All these people that travel here could have made different travel arrangements or cancel the trip, I came from Tucson, but there's people that came from Europe."
Cardenas had a couple of goals for this marathon trip. One of those goals was to finish the race in 4 hours and 5 minutes. Cardenas wasn't just running for himself, he was going to run for Lizzie Bell. She has a disease where her bone marrow doesn't produce enough red blood cells for her body. The other goal was to raise at least $3,000 for Bell. Well Cardenas surpassed that goal. Raising over $4,200 to help Bell with a bone marrow transplant.
Since there's no race, Cardenas will use his time in New York to help with recovery efforts from superstorm Sandy.
"We also want to see if we can be useful and maybe volunteer to help the people that are in need, people that lost their houses," said the Tucson resident.
Cardenas had planned on running 26 miles for Lizzie Bell in Tucson next weekend. But instead he will run for her in January at the Rock and Roll Marathon in Phoenix.
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