Odyssey Impact: An Army Vet Refuses To Leave Another Marathoner Behind

Odyssey Impact: An Army Vet Refuses To Leave Another Marathoner Behind

A man helps a complete stranger finish the last six miles of a grueling race.
8
views

Everyone has heard success stories in which people find lost loved ones and old friends through social media, but to help facilitate a reunion is a privilege not many people are able to experience.

Indiana University student Zoe Spilker was scrolling through her newsfeed when she discovered a post by a marathon runner attempting to locate the U.S. Army veteran who helped her finish the race. The runner, Nikki Labaschin, had six miles left in the marathon before she had to stop and catch her breath.

The veteran, whose name was Pete, stopped when he saw her and walked her the rest of the way to the finish line, selflessly grabbing her water and Gatorade along the way. After the race was over, Labaschin took to social media to look for the kind stranger.


Spilker didn’t know the marathon runner or the veteran personally, and yet she felt connected to the cause. “I was really touched by the story and how this girl got helped across the finish line. I wanted him to be recognized,” Spilker said.

Spilker, a journalism major, chose Odyssey as her outlet to share Labaschin’s story and to help her find Pete. Her post, in which she started the hashtag #FindPete, relayed the heartfelt moments Pete Labaschin shared in their last few miles:

After posting her article, she encouraged her loved ones to pass on the story.

“I had a lot of support from my friends and family just wanting to share it and get the message out,” Spilker said. “I called a couple of my family members and friends and they knew I had the opportunity to make a difference here, so they were all very willing.”

Within 24 hours, her article got more than 500 shares and friends of friends and complete strangers were commenting on her Facebook share with praise, and even some tips on how to find Pete.

“One person commented and said, ‘You might be able to find him this way,’ and said to look up his runner number on the marathon page. I don’t think they even personally knew him, they possibly were involved in the marathon,” Spilker said.

Her Facebook share of the post circulated beyond her own network and in turn, Labaschin’s story was further pushed beyond Indiana and around the United States. Spilker didn’t just share on Facebook, though—she knew it would take more than one platform to make an impact. So, she shared on her Twitter as well.

“There was one point when someone found the girl on Twitter who knew the guy, so I got a few messages on Twitter because of my share,” Spilker said. “I think that was really influential in finding him.”

One person who personally knew Pete found Spilker’s Twitter post was also able to get in touch with Labaschin, and finally, the runners were able to connect.

Spilker’s job was done, and knowing that her article helped the runner connect with her new friend was an incredible experience.

“It definitely made me realize the power of social media in connecting people,” Spilker said. “I think a lot of times when people tweet out things or share different things on Facebook, they don’t realize how many people can see that. It really does have the power to do good.”

This one experience illuminated Spilker’s journey with Odyssey, and showed her that Odyssey’s mission is literally changing lives.

“Sometimes it’s hard to find a platform where we can get our ideas out,” Spilker said. “What’s really special about Odyssey is that our ideas can reach more people than we expect, and social has a great influence in that.”

Popular Right Now

50 Quotes from the Best Vines

If you're picturing the vines in your head, you're doing it right
492261
views

In 2017 we had to say goodbye to one of the best websites to ever roam the internet: Vine. In case you have been living under a rock since 2013, Vine was -(sad face)- a website and app that took the internet and the app store by storm in Winter 2013. It contained 6-second videos that were mostly comedy- but there were other genres including music, sports, cool tricks and different trends. Vine stars would get together and plan out a vine and film it till they got it right.

It was owned by Twitter and it was shut down because of so many reasons; the viners were leaving and making money from Youtube, there was simply no money in it and Twitter wanted us to suffer.

There's been a ton of threads on Twitter of everyone's favorite vines so I thought I'd jump in and share some of my favorites. So without further ado, here are some quotes of vines that most vine fanatics would know.

1. "AHH...Stahhp. I coulda dropped mah croissant"

2. "Nate how are those chicken strips?" "F%#K YA CHICKEN STRIPS.....F%#K ya chicken strips!"

3. "Road work ahead? Uh Yea, I sure hope it does"

4. "Happy Crimus...." "It's crismun..." "Merry crisis" "Merry chrysler"

5. "...Hi Welcome to Chili's"

6. "HoW dO yOu kNoW wHaT's gOoD fOr mE?" "THAT'S MY OPINIONNN!!!.."

7."Welcome to Bible Study. We're all children of Jesus... Kumbaya my looordd"

8. Hi my name's Trey, I have a basketball game tomorrow. Well I'm a point guard, I got shoe game..."

9. "It's a avocadooo...thanks"

10. "Yo how much money do you have?" "69 cents" "AYE you know what that means?" "I don't have enough money for chicken nuggets"

11. "Hurricane Katrina? More like Hurricane Tortilla."

12. "Hey Tara you want some?" "This b*%th empty. YEET!"

13. "Get to Del Taco. They got a new thing called Freesha-- Free-- Freeshavaca do"

14. "Mothertrucker dude that hurt like a buttcheek on a stick"

15. "Two brooss chillin in a hot tub 5 feet apart cuz they're not gay"

16. "Jared can you read number 23 for the class?" "No I cannot.... What up I'm Jared, I'm 19 and I never f#@%in learned how to read."

17. "Not to be racist or anything but Asian people SSUUGHHH"

18. 18. "I wanna be a cowboy baby... I wanna be a cowboy baby"

19. "Hey, I'm lesbian" "I thought you were American"

20. "I spilled lipstick in your Valentino bag" "you spilled- whaghwhha- lipstick in my Valentino White bag?"

21. "What's better than this? Guys bein dudes"

22. "How'd you get these bumps? ya got eggzma?" "I got what?" "You got eggzma?"

23. "WHAT ARE THOSEEEEE?" "THEY are my crocs!"

24. "Can I get a waffle? Can I please get a waffle?"

25. "HAPPY BIRTHDAY RAVEN!" "I can't sweem"

26. "Say Coloradoo" "I'M A GIRAFFE!!"

27. "How much did you pay for that taco?" Aight yo you know this boys got his free tacoo"

28. *Birds chirping* "Tweekle Tweekle"

29. "Girl, you're thicker than a bowl of oatmeal"

30. "I brought you Frankincense" "Thank you" "I brought you Myrrh" "Thank you" "Mur-dur" "huh...Judas..no"

31. "Sleep? I don't know about sleep...it's summertime" "You ain't go to bed?" "Oh she caught me"

32. "All I wanna tell you is school's not important... Be whatever you wanna be. If you wanna be a dog...RUFF. You know?"33. "Oh I like ya accent where you from?" "I'm Liberian" "Oh, my bad *whispering* I like your accent..."

34. "Next Please" "Hello" "Sir, this is a mug shot" "A mug shot? I don't even drink coffee"


35. "Hey did you happen to go to class last week?" "I have never missed a class"

36. "Go ahead and introduce yourselves" "My name is Michael with a B and I've been afraid of insects my entire-" "Stop, stop, stop. Where?" "Hmm?" "Where's the B?" "There's a bee?"

37. "There's only one thing worse than a rapist...Boom" "A child" "No"

38. "Later mom. What's up me and my boys are going to see Uncle Kracker...GIVE ME MY HAT BACK JORDAN! DO YOU WANNA SEE UNCLE KRACKER OR NO?


39. "Dad look, it's the good kush." This is the dollar store, how good can it be?"

40. "Zach stop...Zach stop...You're gonna get in trouble. Zach"

41. "CHRIS! Is that a weed? "No this is a crayon-" I'm calling the police" *puts 911 into microwave* "911 what's your emergency"

42. "WHY? WHY? WHY? WHY? WHY? "

43. *Blowing vape on table* * cameraman blows it away* "ADAM"

44. "Would you like the spider in your hand?" "Yea" "Say please" "Please" *puts spider in hand* *screams*

45. "Oh hi, thanks for checking in I'm still a piece of garrbaagge"

46. *girl blows vape* "...WoW"

47. *running* "...Daddy?" "Do I look like-?"

48. *Pours water onto girl's face" "Hello?"

49. "Wait oh yes wait a minute Mr. Postman" "HaaaAHH"

50. "...And they were roommates" "Mah God they were roommates"


I could literally go on forever because I just reference vines on a daily basis. Rest in peace Vine

Cover Image Credit: Vine

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Poetry On Odyssey: 'Surround'

Inspired by Surround Yourself, an exhibition by Jordan Wilshaw at Eastern Michigan University in April of 2018.
141
views

Sound yourself with the doers.


Surround yourself with the movers,

the shakers,

the believers,

the winner,

the crazies.


Surround yourself with the the dreamers.


Surround yourself with the “good ones”.

Surround yourself with the people who just get it — whatever “it” is.


Surround yourself with people you love.
Surround yourself with those who love you.
Surround yourself with love.



Surround yourself with art.


___________________

For more art by Wilshaw, see their website here.

Cover Image Credit: Author's Photo

Related Content

Facebook Comments