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BethAnn Telford was born in the summer of 1969, in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Since a young age, she has participated in many types of sports and athletic activities, from organized soccer, softball, and field hockey, to running, mountain biking, and skiing. A lifetime of activities and pushing physical and mental boundaries prepared her for her most difficult challenge. In 2004, while running the Marine Corps Marathon, she felt a “pop” in her head around mile marker nineteen and over the next couple of months started to experience problems with her balance and unclear thoughts.
After several weeks of tests in the early winter of 2005, she learned she had brain cancer and that her life would forever be changed. In April of 2005, BethAnn had her first brain surgery and had to learn to just walk, talk, and move all over again. As her rehabilitation began, she was determined to run again. Six weeks after surgery she ran her first 5K race and trained throughout the summer to run and finish the Marine Corps Marathon. She stopped at that same mile marker nineteen to reflect both on her journey and to silently thank her doctors, family and friends that have supported her during her struggles.
Since then, BethAnn has undergone a second brain surgery, a nuerostimulator implant and bladder augmentation surgery for issues related to her brain cancer. Through it all, Beth has competed and finished the Boston Marathons (four times), Marine Corp Marathons (twelve times), the Lake Placid Ironman (twice), and the Kona Ironman World Championships (in 2012).
In addition to pushing her physical boundaries, BethAnn has dedicated herself to raising awareness of brain cancer and to finding a cure. BethAnn founded Team BT as part of the Race for Hope - DC 5K Run/Walk and she has helped raise more than $800,000 for brain cancer research. She has also been featured on the front page of the Washington Post for her efforts in raising awareness for brain cancer research. She has partnered with ABC2 (Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure) in the Over The Edge For Brain Cancer event in San Diego and the Crossing the Canyon challenge. Her biggest physical endeavor was to compete in the World Marathon Challenge in the early winter of 2017. The race consisted of running 7 marathons, in 7 days, on 7 continents, including the cold expanse of Antarctica. She again partnered with ABC2 to use this challenge as a way to raise awareness and funds for research.
In addition to fundraising, BethAnn has testified before the FDA on the benefits of advanced drug therapies, advocated through lobbying Congress, and participated as part of a National Cancer Institute (NCI) and White House briefing held during the fall of 2014. She has also had two grants awarded to the Cleveland Clinic and the University of Florida in her name and she has also been featured in countless articles, books, news stories, including a Discovery program documentary.