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First Glow Run shines for Shelby, supports students

Angie Mayes and Jake Old • Updated Oct 26, 2016 at 11:00 AM

In May 2014, Shelby Glisson tweeted something important to her. 

She said, “I want to leave this earth knowing I left an impact.”

On Saturday night, her mom, Michele, with the help and inspiration of teachers at Coles Ferry Elementary School in Lebanon, saw the first part of that dream come true. The inaugural Shine for Shelby 5K Glow Run took place at Winfree Bryant Elementary School.

Michele Glisson said the money raised from the run will go to support scholarships for nursing students who have a health condition similar to what Shelby went through. Shelby had a rare lung condition that required her to be on oxygen from the time she was 9 months old. She received her first double lung transplant Dec. 23, 2006.

Afterward, Shelby went into chronic rejection and did photopheresis treatment to preserve the lung functions she had left. 

Shelby went on to graduate from Friendship Christian School, attended the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga’s nursing program and was a member of the Sigma Kappa sorority. After a year and a half of college, she started feeling ill, and the transplant team did her seven-year evaluation early to determine what was wrong.

Glisson’s health rapidly deteriorated, and she would not survive long without a second lung transplant, which she had Aug. 12, 2014. The surgery brought about numerous complications. Glisson died Feb. 4.

Before the 5K, a fun run took place for young people. After that run, the students, with the help of adults in attendance, lit and launched wish lanterns, which flew into the sky.

The 5K Glow Run began at 7:30 p.m. Participants wore glow-stick necklaces which glowed brightly in the night. For more information, visit shineforshelby.org

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