Nora was the winner of this award for 2008. The nomination profiled her significant commitment to getting fit and staying fit... an adventure which really only commenced at the age of 60. At the age of 79, Nora completed her sixth Tely 10. Her inaugural walk was with her daughter at her side 1994. Prior to that Nora was never involved with any type of sports activities. Given that she raised 7 children, she focused on being a "stay at home Mom" and never drove. At the age of 60, which Nora marked in 1989, her family noted that "this was when her love of walking took over her life."
Nora continued to walks every day, no matter what the weather to quote her daughter "she will stay at home only if we are in the middle of a snowstorm"), but nothing else stops her. In her community of Topsail, Nora is well known for her walking, people always note to her family that "I see your mother walking every day on my way to work, she never misses a day". Apparently, she has even has followers... People she doesn't even know have been known to stop her and chat, saying "I see you walking every day, how do you stay motivated to do this?" She is motivated now, as it truly is part of her daily routine.
Her daughter shared a wonderful anecdote: "My mother told me after she did the Tely 10 in 2006 (for which she presently holds the record for females of 75 - 79 years) two people came up to her at church and congratulated her. They said she was such an inspiration to them that the next year they were going to participate in the Tely 10!"
In 2008, the Tely 10 became a family affair with 3 of Nora’s grandchildren participating. Her granddaughters participated for their first time ever and told their Mom that they were "nervous that they won't be able to keep up with their Grandmother" and added that "they are walking this race because of the inspiration of their grandmother."
2007 was a difficult year for Nora’s youngest brother, who was very sick. Whenever Nora would go to see him, he would always ask, "Did you walk today?", and of course her answer was always yes. He would say to her "I'm so proud of you, next year I'm going to walk with you. " Unfortunately he didn't survive to do this.
When Nora’s brother passed away not long after the 2007 Tely 10, she shared her Tely 10 Triumph with him. That year she had received the gold medal for the Female 75 -79 age group. During a poignant visit to his the graveside, accompanied by her daughter, she placed the medal on his grave, quietly noting that "he was always so proud to tell everyone about my participation in the Tely 10 and about my walking every day, I want him to have the medal."
Because of Nora’s 2008 participation in the Tely 10, this year there will be 3 generations crossing the Finish Line of the Tely 10 all motivated to do this by her. Her family is very proud of their Mom’s accomplishments and refer to her as "definitely an inspiration to all who know and love her and all the strangers who see her walking every day."