Brain Tumor Not Slowing Down Marathoner

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Sep. 9, 2013
  • Updated Sep. 9, 2013 at 10:02 AM UTC
Bob Oshefksy is keeping a positive attitude about his condition as he prepares to run Chicago. Photo:

The 48-year-old wants to qualify for Boston.

Bob Oshefsky has run 11 editions of the Chicago Marathon, but this upcoming one will be especially memorable for him. The Chicago Sun Times profiled the 48-year-old resident of Lake View, Ill., who was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor last year.

With a diagnosis such as this, this could be Oshefsky’s last Chicago Marathon, but he isn’t letting his condition sour his attitude.

“When I leave here, I personally don’t believe it’ll be brain cancer, because I’m not … going to change my risk profile on things that I would do. If I want to go ziplining, I’ll go ziplining. In all likelihood, I’ll probably get hit by a bus before this brain cancer can take me out,” he said. “I’ve got a lot of life to live.”

For Oshefsky, his primary goal in Chicago is run faster than 3:20 so he can qualify for the 2014 Boston Marathon. His current PR is eight minutes slower than this mark.


Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin is the news editor at and a freelance journalist who’s been covering the sport of running for over five years. He’s run 2:32 in the marathon and won the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race in 2007. His first running book, RUN SIMPLE, was released last July.

Get our best running content delivered to your inbox

Subscribe to the FREE Competitor Running weekly newsletter