Columbia pastor trains for triathlon despite brain cancer diagnosis

11 months 1 week 5 days ago Monday, July 22 2019 Jul 22, 2019 Monday, July 22, 2019 9:28:00 AM CDT July 22, 2019 in News
By: Marc Sallinger, 9News Reporter and Cory Johnson, KOMU 8 Producer
loading

ESTES PARK, CO. — John Drage doesn’t know how many more miles he’s got left in him. 

Every step, every breath, and every day brings him closer to a reality that may not be too far down the trail. 

"At age 52, a lot earlier than I thought, I am looking at death in the face and saying, am I going to be in heaven in a short period of time," said Drage. " We are trying to just figure out, what do we do? It didn’t take long for us to say that we are going to fight and we are going to trust God."

In February, Drage was diagnosed with Glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer. In between doctor's appointments, chemotherapy, and surgery, he's taken on a new challenge to beat. 

"When I’m racing, I get to be alive," said Drage. "I have no idea what it’s about, but when I’m on the racecourse, I’m alive."

Drage and his son, Josh, are now training for a half-Ironman triathlon. They'll run the race in late July in Ohio. 

"I was like, you know what dad, if you’re going to do it, I’m going to do it with you to support you and encourage you through it," said Josh. "It really hit our family really hard. But we know our dad is as tough as they come and he’s a fighter."

Doctors said most patients diagnosed with the same form of cancer usually have just 18 months to live. 

John is a pastor at MU's The Rock Campus Church and for the past 18 years has led a Christian Leadership camp in Estes Park, Colorado. 

He says his faith is leading him through his latest battle. 

"It didn’t take long for us to say that we are going to fight and we are going to trust God," said John. "I’m not saying that we’re not sad or that we don’t cry, or that we’re not a little bit afraid, but I think we have a confidence and a hope that is unshakable."

Even though John doesn’t know how many more mile’s he’s got left in him, he’ll keep running until the end. 

"I hope it’s not my last one," John said. "But maybe it is."

More News

Grid
List
BONNE TERRE, MO. (AP) — An eastern Missouri county has seen a big increase in confirmed coronavirus cases, and... More >>
9 minutes ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 3:52:13 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Two state representatives accused former House Speaker Tim Jones of being involved in cyberbullying Friday afternoon, but... More >>
44 minutes ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 3:17:00 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
As COVID-19 continues to spread, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about impacts in the community. You can... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 2:00:00 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY — The Callaway County prosecutor charged David Dodds, 58, from Corydon, Iowa with five felony counts of sexual... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 1:09:28 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Parents across mid-Missouri are taking it upon themselves to host proms for students after COVID-19 cancelled many official... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 10:49:00 AM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
FULTON - A Fulton man is in custody for attempted statutory rape and sodomy, according to a Missouri State Highway... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 10:14:00 AM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
KANSAS CITY, MO. (AP) — A shooting Thursday in Kansas City, Missouri, left a suspect dead and a police... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 8:55:29 AM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
O’FALLON, Mo. (AP) — The white St. Louis couple who became internationally famous for standing guard with guns outside their... More >>
9 hours ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 6:42:00 AM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
AP—The U.S. public health system has been starved for decades and lacks the resources necessary to confront the worst health... More >>
11 hours ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 5:00:35 AM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Fourth of July festivities are set to begin Friday in Jefferson City, but under a new normal.... More >>
12 hours ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 3:15:00 AM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City School District announced an update to families on Thursday about fall classes. The district's... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, July 02 2020 Jul 2, 2020 Thursday, July 02, 2020 9:07:00 PM CDT July 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA (Missourian) - While higher education saw its state funding slashed Tuesday for the new fiscal year... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, July 02 2020 Jul 2, 2020 Thursday, July 02, 2020 8:32:46 PM CDT July 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - An arcade bar in Columbia is shutting down for two weeks after a customer tested positive for coronavirus,... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, July 02 2020 Jul 2, 2020 Thursday, July 02, 2020 7:35:00 PM CDT July 02, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — Jefferson City police investigators worked with authorities from Jacksonville, Florida to solve a 1999 cold case. ... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, July 02 2020 Jul 2, 2020 Thursday, July 02, 2020 5:32:19 PM CDT July 02, 2020 in News
MISSOURI — As COVID-19 continues to spread throughout Missouri, state and local officials confirm new case counts daily. ... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, July 02 2020 Jul 2, 2020 Thursday, July 02, 2020 5:30:00 PM CDT July 02, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — The Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations Division of Employment Security is handling a record number... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, July 02 2020 Jul 2, 2020 Thursday, July 02, 2020 5:00:00 PM CDT July 02, 2020 in News
TIPTON – Governor Mike Parson signed two bills on Thursday to expand internet broadband in rural Missouri. HB 1768... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, July 02 2020 Jul 2, 2020 Thursday, July 02, 2020 4:56:00 PM CDT July 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — Cities like St. Louis and Kansas City passed mask ordinances this week, and Columbia's city council will decide... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, July 02 2020 Jul 2, 2020 Thursday, July 02, 2020 3:33:00 PM CDT July 02, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 88°
4pm 86°
5pm 81°
6pm 80°
7pm 81°