GREENVILLE — Darke County Common Pleas Court Judge Jonathon “Jon” Hein will be running the 2016 Boston Marathon with his son, Jansen.
The judge decided to run it because of his son, Jansen.
“We’ve done several together,” the elder Hein said. “Jansen started running in 2013.”
He is especially proud of Jansen’s reasoning for doing the marathon.
“He has been doing a fundraiser for World Vision,” the judge said. “He wants to raise $50 to get water for one kid. His goal is $50,000 to give water to 1,000 kids.”
Hein said he is just doing it for his my health, because he, being a judge, is not allowed to raise money.
“Jansen lives in Chicago and he started running after college,” Jon said. “He’s a good tennis player. He went to South Africa with World Vision in 2014. There he raced a 56-miler, the Comrades 2014. If you don’t finish in 12 hours, you don’t get a medal.”
His son, he said, even has a World Vision child.
“Jansen has always had heart for others,” Jon said. “He was always like a big brother in high school or helping kids in need. Every other Sunday, he and a group of guys, at a soup kitchen, provide breakfast for people. He and the guys pay for the meals. In 2013, Jansen got all fired up and raised $26,00 that year. The last two years he ran other marathons and did five in five weeks as part of the fund-raising for World Vision. In 3 1/2 years, he has raised just over $7,000.”
“Hopefully the Lord willing, I get $50,000 of clean water to 1,000 kids,” Jansen said. That is the size of Greenville High School. I’m matching every gift that comes in. It’s hard for me not to reach out to other people. The largest killer of kids are illness from their lack of clean water. There are 650 million in the world that still have no access to clean water.”
He appreciates all who have contributed to his cause, including Darke countians.
“There are so many good people in Greenville,” he said. “They care for kids in Africa. I’m proud of my mom. She is a micro-financier.”
Jansen, a 2007 graduate of Greenville High School, attended Messiah College n Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, played tennis and got a degree in accounting.
The Chicago resident spends most of his working time traveling, especially to the East Coast where many of his clients are.
“I love the big city and I’m back in the Midwest,” he said. “It [traveling] wears you a little bit but the team makes it fun. I’m building a larger friend base. A group of us meet at away games.”
Jansen does continues to run. the different races while traveling, and the partners in his business support his efforts.
He plans to keep on running.
“It’s hard to start from ground zero,” he said. “I ran a series in the fall and ran four marathons already this year. Running is a release for me. It’s very therapeutic.”
In their first race together, the Heins finished a minute apart, and have finished together in three marathons.
“The age gap helps me,” said 28-year-old Jansen.
“You’re faster than I ever was,” said the judge.
Jansen is the youngest of the Hein children. Jon and wife Rosie also have daughter, Lauren, a resident of Los Angeles, and son Nathan, living in Dallas. In fact, in 2014, Lauren ran in a marathon in L.A. with her father and brother Jansen.
The judge, who admitted to “messing” with the crowds along the route plans to take a disposable camera this year and take photos from the runner’s point of view.
“I always thank the law enforcement working in the streets,” he said.
Rosie will be traveling with her husband to Boston, and will be waiting at mile 22 during the marathon.
Those interested in helping Jansen with his cause can do so at www.teamworldvision.org/participant/jhein
This writer may be reached at 937-569-4315. Follow her on Facebook and join the conversation and get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.