Boy with skeletal disorder prepares for Sherry's Run - WKRN News 2

Boy with skeletal disorder prepares for Sherry's Run

Posted: Updated: Sep 6, 2012 04:00 PM
WILSON COUNTY, Tenn. -

Seven-year-old Alex Johnson has a rare skeletal dysplasia that affects his bones, but that is not slowing him down.

For the past few weeks he, his coach Greg Armstrong and his brother Michael have been training, so that Alex can complete his first 5k.

"We are going to do our best at Sherry's Run, that's all that matters," Alex told Nashville's News 2 while sitting in his wheelchair.

With an avid runner behind the running chair, Coach Armstrong said he plans to push as fast as he can the first three miles, while Alex plans walk the rest.

"It was really kind of heartbreaking, the first day he couldn't do five yards with his walker and as of last week he walked 37 yards," Armstrong said. "That was just so inspiring to see how much progress that he's made and for him to walk and then turn around and look where his wheelchair is and how far he's come that was real encouraging."

Alex's positive attitude and determination has inspired more than 500 students at Friendship Christian School to get behind him and race at the 9th annual Sherry's Run as well.

"These are the two words that you should never, ever do, ‘Don't Complain' and ‘Never Give Up,'" said Alex.

His brother Michael will help make the transition from running chair to walker, so that Alex can finish the race on his own.

"Everybody that's on his team believes in him," Michael told Nashville's News 2.

Since Alex is too heavy for him to push, Michael helped create Team Alex.

As captain he's sold nearly 500 shirts. On the back is the scripture Philippians 2:14 which in part states, "Doing everything without complaining" and the front Alex's motto "We got this."

"You know how people say they can't do this and they usually do, instead I rearranged that to we got this," said Alex.

Alex's father, Nathan, said he will be cheering his son on at the finish line.

"It's been a different type of journey, but it's been a blessing because we are able to turn our disability in to an ability to help people," Johnson expressed.

Sherry's Run 5k Run/Walk will be held in Lebanon on Saturday.

The event was started in memory of Sherry Whitaker who suffered from colon cancer.

Funds raised at the race go to help cancer patients in Wilson County.

For more details on the race visit Sherry'sRun.org.

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