Hood to Coast Relay: 199 miles, 30 hours, no sleep, nothing short of amazing

Recently, I had the privilege of running in the annual Hood to Coast Relay as part of Team Providence. It’s a 199-mile run that traverses half the state of Oregon. It starts on Mount Hood, travels through Portland and ends at the Pacific Ocean. There’s stunning scenery everywhere you turn and nothing but positive energy and enthusiasm all around.

Mount Hood



Providence was the title sponsor of the event, with proceeds benefiting our cancer center in Portland. When our Oregon colleagues first invited me to run with them, I wasn’t entirely sure what I was getting myself in to, but I’m so glad I did it. Crossing the finish line as a team was an amazing feeling, but even more so was the journey it took to get there, together.

Finish Line


Three things I loved most about the event.

1. Other runners and volunteers kept coming up to us tell us about the impact that Providence has had on their lives.

One gentleman told me our cancer center saved his wife’s life. Another gentleman and his daughter said they raised $10,000 on their own for Providence because they felt it was critically important for Portland to have a world-class cancer center in the region. Even though this event took place in Oregon, Providence has the same impact on each community we serve thanks to all of you.   

2. I got to spend quality time with some amazing caregivers.

I had a wonderful opportunity to spend time with 36 runners from Providence and 12 from Swedish. It was great to get to know them on a personal level, which is bound to happen when you spend 30 hours together on no sleep! The energy and camaraderie were just what I needed to power through the race, especially during my second leg, a hilly six miles at three in the morning.

Team Prov


Better Together


3. The event embodies our core strategy of creating healthier communities, together.

It brings people in the community together to support cancer care, which is a vital service that most people will need for themselves or a loved one at some point in their lives. Providence supports runs and walks for many different health causes in all our communities, and I have always believed they’re a great way to engage with the people we serve.

Great Cause

Thank you to everyone who supports these types of events across Providence. I also want to extend a special thank you to our fearless leader in Oregon, Dave Underriner, for his leadership of Hood to Coast, which raised more than $500,000 for the Providence Cancer Center, and all the volunteers from Providence who made this event possible. It was a well-organized, world-class event all the way. I was proud to be part of it.

Dave U

Dave Underriner, our Oregon Region chief executive

We are Providence

Julie and Tam from the Providence Cancer Center


A brief video about the run



A few more pics from the Twitter stream

St Vince Crew

Saint Vincent Crew

Team Back to the Suture with Providence Willamette Falls

Team Back to the Suture with Providence Willamette Falls


Group photo

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Getting ready for Hood to Coast (April 2014) 

  1. Thank you, Rod, for taking the time to take part in this event and for being present to the Providence caregivers throughout the System.

  2. Knowing you all have put forth such a great effort to raise money for cancer research is incredible! THANK YOU EVERY ONE OF YOU!