Hundreds of runners turned out for the inaugural 'Run for Lawson'. The race remembers the life of a Tallahassee teen and raises awareness on the disease that cut her life short.
"Lawson was our vibrant, fun, exuberant eighteen year old daughter," says Lawson's mother, Kathy Mayfield.
Lawson Mayfield was like most teens...
"She loved surfing, she loved to write, she loved to read, she was just always doing something," says Mayfield
But at 18, Lawson's life changed. She contracted bacterial meningitis-a disease that causes tissue inflammation in the brain and spinal cord. It can lead to hearing loss, learning disabilities and even brain damage.
"I had always thought of bacterial meningitis as something that might affect young children, babies, I heard a lot about, hardly anything at all was I aware of in her age group," says Mayfield.
In September 2009, Lawson passed away. Now her family has established the Lawson Mayfield Memorial Foundation to keep their daughter's memory alive and raise awareness on the disease that took her life
"It's a very contagious disease. It can be debilitating, if not fatal and there is a safe and effective vaccine," says Mayfield.
Each donation from Saturday's Race will go to the National Meningitis Association, putting them one step closer to the finish line.
The Center for Disease Control says that adolescents and young adults face the highest risk for contracting the disease.