Monday, February 9, 2009

Why Julie is a Special Name

By Bill Martin
(Guest Blogger, TNT Run Coach)

I believe that God has a plan. 28 years ago I took a friend to the San Diego blood bank to donate platelets for a family friend who was sick with Leukemia. I came back 3 hours later to find out that the nurse had problems drawing blood from my friend’s arms. They asked if I would donate platelets in his place. I did and my life changed forever. I became her platelet donor. She was 8 years old when I met her, and she was fighting a double case of Leukemia.

Her name was Julianna Renee Farley.

Julie became the focus of my life for the next year and a half. She passed away on February 9, 1983. My daughter was born 3 months later, and we named her Julianna Renee Martin. My life changed again. I struggled with the pain of loss for numerous years. I made the decision not to get involved again, but I continued to donate platelets. In 1996 I met a runner who got me involved in TNT. My honored teammate's name was Julie. There is no such thing as coincidences. My life changed again, and I became involved.

13 years later, I am volunteering for my 26th season with TNT. Last week, one of my honored teammates, Julie, asked me if I wanted to join her and run the Boston Marathon for the Livestrong Foundation. Today is the 26th anniversary of Julie's passing from Leukemia. In exactly 26.2 years from the day she passed, I am running 26.2 miles in her honor, along with Julie Westcott, at the most prestigious marathon in the world. The Boston Marathon. I am running that marathon representing the Lance Armstrong Foundation whose goal is to unite people to fight cancer. I thought the only way to get to Boston was to qualify. I was so wrong. There is no such thing as coincidences. God has a plan. I wonder what’s next.

- Bill M.

Pic #1: Julianna Farley with Bill Martin, Kit Carson Park - 1982
Pic #2: Julie Westcott with Bill Martin, Rock 'n' Roll Marathon - 2008
*To donate* to support the fundraising efforts of Team LIVESTRONG, running the Boston Marathon on April 20th to raise funds for the Lance Armstrong Foundation, please click on the "Cures Rock!" Star logo on the right side of this page. (From that link, you can also click on "Team Page" to view the whole team.)


  1. What a touching story and testimony how God has a plan in each one of our lives. Thank you Bill for touching Julie's life today.

  2. Wow! Thank you for sharing your story. Art

  3. This is amazing...for some reason I decided to google my daughter Julianna Farley's name tonight and this blog came up. Bill, I have thought of u so many times throughout the years and I believe the last time I saw you is when you brought by your new little daughter "Julie".... please email me:


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Lance Armstrong's "Tour de France" Dedication to Julie

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