Cody's Run raises money for Lone Grove native's cancer battle

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The crowd took on a three mile race for Cody Ponder. Ponder has been fighting esophageal cancer for nearly 2 years. And every pound of the pavement is a step toward his recovery.

"The run is in support of not just the journey but in support of love, faith, hope and courage," said Ponder. "It's our main theme and that's what we try to achieve."

Ponder's family put the 5K together to raise money for medical bills and to raise awareness for esophageal cancer.

"When we first heard about him having cancer we wanted to to do something to help people hear more about esophageal cancer so that's really what got us going," said Bridgit Vaughn, Ponder's cousin and organizer of the event.

From entry fees, donations and sponsorships combined they raised about $15,000 for Ponder's treatments.

And out of nearly 400 runners who contributed to that number one friend and business partner of Ponder came all the way from Canada to join in the fight.

"He's got a courageous battle ahead of him and he's done a wonderful job," said Mike Bismeyer, who came from Canada to run in the 5k. "So I didn't hesitate to come on down, and the company supported me to come down and show our support too."

And for Ponder, that very support keeps him fighting.

"Really and truthfully, it's overwhelming," said Ponder. "It's one of those things that makes your heart smile, you can't say thank you enough."

Ponder's family plans to make this an annual event.

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