Miles for Meso Spotlight: Honoring the Legacy of Mesothelioma Warrior George Dreith

A great way to show support for a loved one who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma is by registering for the 14th Annual Alton Miles for Meso 5K Race & 3K Fun Run/Walk, which will be held both in-person and virtually this year.

The race is scheduled to begin on Sept. 24, 2022, two days before National Mesothelioma Awareness Day 2022. Proceeds from the race will benefit the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO).

For this week’s Miles for Meso Spotlight, we would like to share the story of the hardworking, loving, and kind George Dreith, who was a Simmons Hanly Conroy mesothelioma client from our hometown of Alton, Illinois.

As the son of an aircraft mechanic, George learned the value of hard work at a young age. Unfortunately, as with many laborers in the 1950s and 60s, George’s parents and relatives were exposed to asbestos at their jobs and unknowingly carried asbestos fibers home with them on their clothing. This is how George was first exposed to asbestos. Later in life, George also experienced exposure to asbestos at his job site.

Because mesothelioma is a slow-developing disease, it wasn’t until decades later that George started experiencing symptoms. Shortness of breath was the precursor to his pleural mesothelioma diagnosis.

After his diagnosis, George endured many rounds of chemotherapy and continued to fight back against mesothelioma while making the most of his time with his loved ones.

Several months into his treatment, George and his family took part in the 6th Annual Miles for Meso event in Alton to help raise awareness and funds for mesothelioma research. He and his 65-member team formed “Georgie Porgie’s Meso Patrol,” which quickly won top honors for fundraising.

George ultimately lost his battle with mesothelioma in June 2015. A journal entry, shared by his family after his death, offers a glimpse into the quality of George’s character in his own words:

“I ask you all to do two things for me: First, each morning look to the heavens and thank God for another great day on this Earth, and enjoy it with your loved ones and friends; Second, please pass forward the love you have shown me to others. You can’t believe how much it means. Thanks for being my friend.”

George was neither defined by his exposure to asbestos nor the disease it caused. His story lives on in the hearts and minds of those who knew him and he is sorely missed. His legacy continues to inspire and make a difference with each passing year.

Georgie Porgie’s Meso Patrol still raises awareness and funds for mesothelioma through the Miles for Meso race in Alton. Georgie Porgie’s Meso Patrol has been the highest fundraiser team for a number of years — a milestone of which George would certainly be proud.

As of August 22, 2022, the top fundraisers are:

  • Alan’s Angels
  • Captain Bob’s Team
  • Georgie Porgie’s Meso Patrol
  • Mario’s Zoogies
  • Winky

Alton Miles for Meso Committee Chair Todd Adamitis presented the 2020 1st Place Team Fundraising Award to the Georgie Porgie Meso Patrol, who raised funds in honor of George Dreith, a mesothelioma warrior and firm client from Illinois. His widow, team captain Sue Tanney, her grandson, and Chris Dreith accepted the award.

While George may be gone, his legacy — and the impact he and his loved ones have had on the mesothelioma community — will always be remembered.

Click here to read George’s full story >>>

To get involved and show your support for the individuals and families who have been impacted by mesothelioma, consider participating in one of the following ways:

Participants can register for the 14th annual Miles for Meso race until Aug. 26 for $35, or by Sept. 18 for $40. If registering on race day the cost is $45. Virtual registration will be open until Sept. 9 for $40. For your support, you will receive a Miles for Meso race day shirt to wear on Sept. 24.

On the day of the race, post a picture of yourself running or walking and share it with the hashtag #milesformeso on Facebook to help spread awareness in honor of National Mesothelioma Awareness Day. All registration proceeds from the Alton race will benefit the ADAO.

Click here to start the registration process now >>>

If you are unable to join the Miles for Meso race this year, consider donating to support the vital work done by the ADAO. The ADAO is the sole recipient of all proceeds from the race. All donations are tax-deductible.

Click here to donate >>>

Simmons Support Team
Simmons Hanly ConroyWritten by:

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