Gene 'Runs to the Sun'

Gene Arant 2013 first leg of Run to the Sun

On April 26-27, Gene is lacing up his running shoes and participating in the 4th Annual Run to the Sun Relay benefiting Beyond Batten Disease Foundation for the 3rd time.

What is Batten disease?

Batten disease is a rare neurodegenerative disease that affects small children (starting around age 5).

The progressively debilitating disease begins with vision loss and blindness, causes seizures and leads to a slow deterioration of physical and mental capacities. Children with Batten disease become bedridden and succumb to the disease by their late teens or early twenties. I can hardly think of a worse fate for a child. Imagine waking up one day and a disease you've never heard of completely changes the life you imagined for your family.  I can only appreciate my children Olivia, Sophia Ford and give thanks for their health and well-being. I am honored to provide support and funding to the fight to make a difference in the lives of all kids with Batten disease. 

The Beyond Batten Disease Foundation has achieved significant breakthroughs regarding testing opportunities for future generations and has helped us get closer to a treatment through funding promising research at Texas Children's Hospital. But more needs to be done and they need our support. To learn more about the organization and how your dollars will be used visit

What is the Run to the Sun Relay?

Run to the Sun is an over 90-mile overnight relay run from Enchanted Rock State Park to Laguna Gloria in Austin. The relay will end at sunrise, symbolizing the hope that the children and their families have for a treatment and, eventually, a cure for this horrible disease. I am ready to take on this challenge, and I find inspiration from the kids that are struggling every day with this illness.

How can YOU help?

We are asking you to give a donation and support Gene in the Run to the Sun. He has pledged to raise $4,000, twice as much as last year, to help fight this disease. Every dollar will make an impact, so please give what you can. Please contribute to the link here:


THANK YOU for joining the race to cure Batten disease!

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