If he never runs another furlong, Chase Whelan will still be able to regale future generations with the story of his Sunday afternoon more-than-a-marathon jaunt across Mercer County.
“I’m not sure how I feel right now,” the 19-year-old Hermitage resident said about 6 p.m. Sunday outside Grace Chapel’s Elm Avenue church in Sharon.
That was about six hours after he left the church’s main building on Lamor Road in Hermitage for a 32-mile run to raise money for Haiti.
Whelen ran over hill and dale on U.S. Route 62 to Mercer, then took state Route 318 back to the Shenango Valley to account for the miles, which tally to a round 50 kilometers.
A non-winded but physically exhausted Whelan talked to the dozen or so family, friends and fellow church members after the run, which raised money the church will take with it during its summer mission trip to Pelerin, Haiti.
“It was very, very cool,” Whelan said of the run.
He didn’t have a tally of the amount raised Sunday night, but was happy to receive the support his did in the last few weeks as word about his trek traveled around town.
“I’m just really proud of him,” Whelan’s mother Vickie, said.
His father John agreed.
“I didn’t know if he’d pull it off or not,” he said, adding he put about 100 miles on his van following Chase and going ahead of and behind him during the run. “I’m very proud.”
“This is how I want to impact the mission,” Whelan said previously about why he chose to make the run.
He ran cross country and track during his high school years at West Middlesex and he participated in the indoor track season during his freshman year at Westminster College, where he’s studying biology.
To make a donation, make checks payable to Grace Chapel and send them to the church, at Grace Chapel Community Church, 4075 Lamor Road, Hermitage, PA 16148.