Aaron Moureau, Busser at Zuppa’s Market, Café & Catering
Aaron has daily challenges: medical, cognitive and developmental. Two impacts these challenges have on him include limited modes of transportation and full independence which impede his social life. Aaron’s healthy lifestyle began over 15 years ago on the day he joined a basketball program through Special Olympics. He learned dedication, sportsmanship, teamwork and most importantly, how to have a fun while being active. His family supported him through rides to games, packing a lunch and making sure he had his uniform and water. They cheered for his team and celebrated all basket attempts by him and the other participants.
Aaron is a great motivator. Four years ago he prodded his mom to sign him up for a local run. His mom, Kathy, was not thrilled with having to run, agreed to do 2 miles instead of the 5 miles since she had never done it before and was overweight. One of the main reasons Aaron wanted to do the Turkey Trot, was for the pie at the end of the race, but there was something special about those two miles.
“Mom remember to try and to be brave.” He was reciting the Special Olympics pledge: “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”
“I don’t know if he is aware of the impact he has had on my life,” cites Kathy. For the first time, Aaron realized he did something that no one else in his family did, run in a race. Running that Turkey Trot, sparked a love of running for both him and his family. The family participates in at least one community run every month and in order to have a successful run, the family learned the importance of eating healthy. Through this lifestyle change Aaron has lost nearly 60 pounds by being more active, reducing sugar, salt and fat in his diet.
“Although pie at the end of a race is still a great reward, a bigger reward is the positive impacts running has had on their health. “