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Race2Erase is designed to be a fun and relaxing event for everyone, while raising awareness for those fight PTSD.
Race Day is April 8th 2018, at Hoopers Island Road, Church Creek, MD.
This is the 4th race raising awareness for those who suffer from PTSD.
Race 2 Erase PTSD Founder and Dorchester County native, Jenny Gootee Whitten is a businesswoman, wife and athlete. She is smart, brave and compassionate. Like many runners, Jenny runs to cope with the complicated symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Jenny’s journey with PTSD began October 10, 1989. At age 16, two weeks after earning her driver’s license, Jenny set off for school in her parent’s vehicle. On her way, she picked up her best friend at his house. It was a beautiful day. Jenny was happy for the privilege to drive her friend to school and to experience the wonderful freedom that comes with driving; it was the greatest. They talked about their upcoming day as they listened to music. Jenny reached to adjust her radio. This was her last memory before waking with her legs pinned beneath the vehicle in a soybean field. Three hours later, strapped in the ambulance, she was asked, “Was anybody else with you?” Jenny gave the name of her friend. A few minutes later someone tapped on the ambulance and said, “Go ahead.” That’s when her life changed forever. Her friend was gone.
Although Jenny received minor injuries, her friend lost his life. There was nothing she could do to change that fact. As the driver of the vehicle, Jenny was deeply traumatized by the experience and her involvement in the accident. For years, Jenny appeared to be proceeding with “life as usual”. However, on the inside, she was trapped in a storm of immense suffering and emotional pain that no one could see. She felt guilty. She felt responsible. She wished that she had been the one who lost her life instead of her best friend.
Jenny experimented with alcohol once or twice prior to her accident. However, her drinking escalated afterward as she attempted to cope with her extreme emotions. She wished that the accident had been a dream that would end and the alcohol helped to temporarily suppress the pain. Jenny was in shock. She was emotionally numb and an angry mess. She tried so hard to cover up the pain and to act as though the accident had not happened. She worked hard in school, earned good grades, participated in sports and other extracurricular activities. She was trying to be okay. She wasn’t. Jenny had all of the symptoms of PTSD before they were clinically recognized as occurring outside of war zones, but Jenny was having her own war inside.
During a very low point in 2010, Jenny sought the expertise of Adeline Tryon, MD, Psychologist, in Easton, Maryland. Dr. Tryon worked with Jenny to successfully navigate through the many misunderstood symptoms of PTSD. It was at this point that Jenny integrated running into her personal treatment plan. Jenny found that through running, she could successfully improve her mood and cope with the severe anxiety and depression associated with PTSD. Running has become Jenny’s “healthy escape”. Jenny’s success in her road to recover from PTSD is attributed to her personal relationship with God, successful psychological intervention and the unconditional love of her friends and family and of course, running!