After months of planning and fundraising, Albert Ajemian of North York, Ont., conquered his 100K challenge in just over 13 hours, raising almost $6,000 for the SickKids Foundation, which funds groundbreaking research and state of the art facilities.
Ajemian started his run on the night of May 13 at the Second Cup at York Mills Rd. and Leslie St. in North York. He then made his way southeast to the Toronto Beaches before heading west to Bathurst St. along Toronto’s Harbourfront trail. Once Ajemian hit Bathurst, he headed north (uphill) to finish where he started on the 14th.
The 44-year-old also made a detour downtown, visiting Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children (affectionately known as Sick Kids) and taking photos for his challenge. He chose to help this charity because he wanted to make a difference after several of his friend’s kids have been treated at the hospital.
“I have an immense amount of gratitude for the amazing hospital staff who work hard day in and day out to better the lives of sick children,” Ajemian says. “They are the true heroes.”
Ajemian was born and raised in Tel Aviv, Israel, and immigrated to Canada at age 20. He began running 10 years ago to be active and healthy in his mid-30s but has since fallen in love with the sport, completing his first ultramarathon in 2020. “I have always wanted to work toward the ultimate goal of running 100k,” says Ajemian.
He admitted that he wouldn’t have been able to complete his challenge without the support of his run group, his family and his friend Osman Veisi, who ran every step of the 100K alongside Ajemian in support of the cause.
Ajemian and Veisi became friends through the York Mills Runners, a group that ran out of the York Mills Running Room store until its closure in 2018. After the store closed, the group has continued to run together under the name YMR.
The North York runner says he will be taking a break before conquering his next challenge.
Ajemian has currently raised $5,800 for the SickKids Foundation, which continues to build partnerships across Canada and around the world, so all kids get the care they deserve. Last year, he organized a “Run Around the Clock” relay, which brought in another $5,000 for the SickKids Foundation.
You can donate toward his cause, here.