Need inspiration? Here’s just the ticket

August 15, 2011 —

Among the bravest people in the world are those who endeavor to reach the top of Mount Everest and those who battle cancer. An event in Des Moines this Thursday, Aug. 18, will feature the amazing stories of both.

Charlie Wittmack at Mount Everest

In 2010, Charlie Wittmack launched the World Triathlon, in which he swam the English Channel, bicycled across numerous countries and then – for the second time in his life – successfully reached the world’s tallest peak. This unstoppable adventurer, who worked with DMU to prep for the Tri, is continuing the endeavor by raising funds for Save the Children’s newborn and child survival programs in Nepal.

Dr. Richard Deming has devoted his career and life to creating second chances for others as medical director of the Mercy Cancer Center in Des Moines. In spring 2011, he partnered with the World Tri to lead 14 cancer survivors and 15 caregivers to Mount Everest’s 17,600-foot base camp.

“Along their journey the team laughed, they cried, and they survived,” notes publicity by the Above & Beyond Cancer Survivor Trekking Team. “Then they returned home with a new sense of purpose and a renewed belief that anything is possible.”

Hear the awe-inspiring stories of these individuals at “Committed to the Core: an Evening of Inspiration,” beginning at 7 p.m. Thursday at historic Hoyt Sherman Place, 1501 Woodland Ave. The event will also feature music by one of the cancer survivors, Justin Anderson (who was recently featured on CNN and MSNBC), and films by Slate.com multimedia journalist John Richard. Reserved seats are $12.50, with all proceeds benefiting future Above & Beyond Cancer programs.


Endlessly curious and easily entertained, Barb Dietrich Boose loves being a member of the friendly, fascinating DMU community and its creative communications team. The University's publications director and DMU Magazine editor, Barb is always on the hunt for story ideas, good books and new recipes to try out on her family, such as her surprisingly tasty pork-and-bean bars.