Editor’s Note: This story has been corrected to state that people can still enter the 5K. We apologize for the error.
By Leah Sander
WINONA LAKE — Payton Slaymaker’s legacy will live on at a special event Saturday, Oct. 16.
To mark what would have been the day before her 11th birthday, her family has helped organize the Fear is a Liar Pay’s 5K color run and walk, starting at 10 a.m. at Winona Lake Limitless Park (WLLP).
Payton inspired many people through her short life while battling diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), a cancer that originates in the brain stem. Her family shared her battle via a Facebook page that got widespread attention.
The Claypool girl passed away on April 21 at age 10.
The run is organized by Fear is a Liar Ministries, which her parents, Andrew and Kim Slaymaker, started after she died. As Kim Slaymaker explained to InkFreeNews, the ministry is meant for “being a light and giving a hope” to others.
Specifically, it’s intended to benefit those affected by pediatric cancer. Kim Slaymaker said funds that are raised will help pay for such things as utilities and gift cards for families that have a child battling cancer. The organization is under the umbrella of the Slaymakers’ church, Gospel Hill Pentecostal Church of God in Silver Lake.
Proceeds from Saturday’s event will go to the organization, which will, in turn, be sent to The Cure Starts Now, an organization that funds cancer research. Kim Slaymaker said the group paid for two clinical trials that Payton went through.
People may sign up for the race the day of starting at 8 a.m. or online by clicking here. There’s also a virtual option if people can’t come in person. Kim Slaymaker said as of last week 270 people have signed up to participate either in person or virtually. Some of those involved virtually are from North Carolina and Colorado.
During the event, there will be face painting for the kids. There will be cupcakes and a balloon release following the return of all the walkers and runners as a birthday celebration for Payton.
The event Saturday joins a number of other tributes to Payton, including butterfly murals at Claypool Elementary School where she attended and WLLP. As Payton loved llamas, the Payton Slaymaker Love of Llamas Memorial Fund was created at the Kosciusko County Community Foundation in honor of her.
The fund provides means for a Payton Slaymaker Love of Llamas Mental Attitude Award, which goes to a Kosciusko County 4-H’er who shows llamas.
As to what Payton would think about the 5K and other events Saturday, Kim Slaymaker said she would be pleased.
She’d be “overwhelmed with such love,” said Kim Slaymaker.
To donate to Fear is a Liar Ministries, send funds to Fear is a Liar Ministries, P.O. Box 1725, Warsaw, IN 46581.