Running for Kimberly Batchelor: A mother's loss - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Running for Kimberly Batchelor: A mother's struggle coping with loss

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HAMPSTEAD, NC (WECT) – For the first time since she passed away, the mother of Kimberly Batchelor is speaking out; remembering and honoring the life of her daughter.

Kimberly Batchelor, 13, passed away back in March.

She was one of only 30 people in the country diagnosed with Leptomeningeal Oligodendrogliomatosis. This type of cancer impacts the brain, the brain stem and the spine.

Her family held a 5K race in her honor on Saturday.

Nearly 300 people came out to Washington Acres Road, Kimberly's neighborhood, to take part in the race.

Everyone walked with a heavy heart, especially Kimberly's mother Shona Batchelor, who hasn't spoke in public since her daughter passed.

"It's a struggle," said Batchelor.  "Every day is a struggle."

Batchelor struggles just talking about her daughter.  But her family and the Hampstead community will never forget the legacy she left behind.

"It's been an amazing journey.  Kimberly is the one who brought this community together," said Batchelor.  "It was her smile and fight and they still stand behind that fight and that smile."

Pictures of Kimberly are strung across the finish line, reminding runners of her memory and bringing awareness to the rare disease which took her life.

The family says they plan to host this event annually, to keep the memory of Kimberly alive for years to come.

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