Briggs & Al's Run & Walk returns after 2 years

NOW: Briggs & Al’s Run & Walk returns after 2 years

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The 45th Annual Briggs & Al's Run & Walk was held to benefit Children's Wisconsin shutdown in Downtown Milwaukee Saturday morning, on Sept. 17.

Thousands of people started out at Marquette University campus and came all the way to Summerfest grounds, all for a good cause.

"We have over 8,000 community members, patient families coming together to raise money for Children's Wisconsin," said Children's Wisconsin Foundation Vice President of Donor Engagement Christine Baranoucky.

She said this year's race is different than recent ones because they have been virtual due to COVID, but it's also the race's 45th year.

Baranoucky said that means 45 years of earning money for research and more at Children's Wisconsin, the way Marquette University Basketball Coach Al McGuire intended.

"[The funds raised help] us do the things that aren't covered by insurance aren't covered by Medicaid, and so all the things that make Children's Wisconsin special," said Baranoucky.

She said this year over 1,700 former or current Children's Wisconsin patients were part of the Run & Walk, more than ever before.

"Joe was born with a congenital heart defect that required surgery within two weeks of him being born," said mom Natalie Ruedinger talking about her son Joe.

Families like the Ruedingers say while there's more surgeries ahead for Joe, he's glad to see so many people like him being supported by the community.

"It's crazy there's so much people that have different issues and it's happy for them to be able to be all right now," said Joe.

"We're very appreciative of Children's Hospital of Wisconsin ever since Joe was born. This is just the way for us to give back," said Joe's dad John Ruedinger.

Participants have raised over $21 million since the race started in 1977.

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