At every Rock ‘n’ Roll start line thousands of runners join each other to take part in an incredible event, accomplishing amazing goals. Each of our fellow runners has a story to tell that brings them to that start line, this is about a group of runners remembering their friend and inspiration.
At KEXP radio in Seattle, the voice and smile of Aubrey Bean are heard and seen no longer. But they are always remembered.
It would take a whole book to describe her,” said Kelly Hilst, her former coworker at KEXP. “She was just a delightful person. She was warm and friendly and funny, and anyone who knew her will rave about her infectious smile. And she was a great listener, which is more rare than I realized.”
For four years, Aubrey managed the radio station’s Annual Giving program and membership base. Kelly recalls stressful moments when Aubrey’s bright smile would calm and encourage the rest of the staff.
“No matter what she was going through, she would always ask how you were doing–and she really wanted to know,” says Kelly.
And Aubrey was going through something. She was diagnosed in 2008 with colon cancer. An avid runner, Aubrey had planned to run the Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Half Marathon that year but a tumor in her hip would not allow it. In 2012, determined to reach her goal, Aubrey crossed the finish line in a wheelchair.
Kelly says Aubrey was honest and open about her struggles. She wrote on her blog: “I’m striving to recognize my own power, my own ability to offer something small and meaningful to others, because that’s all I have left to share. I don’t know what form it will come in. But every day will offer new opportunities, and who knows what ripple-effects that will create in the world around me.”
On Saturday, June 21, those ripple effects will be felt deeply by those who loved Aubrey as more than 30 of them gather at the start line of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Marathon & ½ Marathon to run in her honor. Family and friends are flying in from as far away as Ohio and Las Vegas. Just a few days after the one-year anniversary of Aubrey’s passing, “Team Aubrey” will remember and honor her life one mile at a time.
“I think she would love to see us come together and celebrate her at the marathon. We had such a great time in 2012 and I know she would be happy that we’re thinking about her while we run and enjoy the music.”
This story is just one of many that brings the members of the Rock ‘n’ Roll community together. Share your personal story and you could be featured on the Rock Blog.