Crim founder’s grandson raises $110-thousand with epic 62-mile run

Published: Sep. 13, 2020 at 10:52 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) (09/13/2020)-Just one of those summer coronavirus cancellations: the Crim Festival of Races in Flint.

The loss of the race called for drastic measures to patch a hole in the charity’s budget that ended in a 62-mile run for the grandson’s founder, who stepped in to support their critical work in the community. Running 100k for 100k.

A race that ended with a photo finish 62 miles in the making. Zach Crim didn’t look as exhausted as most of us might after running the equivalent of two and a half marathons.

“Obviously it hurt a little bit, but it was for a great cause,” related Zach.

The Crim Fitness Foundation, spearheaded by Zach’s grandfather, Bobby, has supported children and families in Genesee County for decades, teaching the power of mindfulness, proper nutrition and physical activity. But, when COVID sidelined the foundation’s signature race in favor of a virtual event, it cost them.

“There was a hole in our budget,” explained Founder Bobby Crim. “The vrtuals didn’t bring in that much money. We’ll raise $90 to $100-thousand in a day. What a thing.”

A single lightbulb moment changed everything: Zach volunteered to run and fundraise to make up the difference.

Fast forward to Sunday, as the Crim Facebook page kept the crowd on their toes through each and every step of the grueling nine hour trek from Lansing. Meanwhile, back at the finish near University Pavilion, a carnival-like atmosphere had taken hold as dozens of vintage cars rolled through courtesy of Back 2 the Bricks.

The moment of truth finally arrived around 3:15 Sunday afternoon as Zach rounded that last corner onto Saginaw and crossed the finish line with four generations of family by his side.

“Really, the most special part,” related Zach. “I was really excited to run this last section with my daughter, too, who’s a year and a half. This was her first teddy bear trot.”

Zach’s daughter, father and grandfather all took on that final leg, only to find the miles they put in had literally paid off. The foundation had surpassed its goal of $100-thousand, raising $110,000 instead with donations still pouring in.

As he stood in front of a statue commemorating the pioneering work of his grandfather, one might say Zach is living the family legacy.

“When you’re running this far, you really have to find your why,” explained Zach. “Today, my why was better than any other reason I’ve ever had.”

“To say I’m proud of him is not enough,” said Bobby. “A great young man and he knows what it’s all about.”

Donations are still being accepted.

To contribute to the Crim cause, click here.

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