It's only been 16 days since we first published our article about Noah Lambrecht, The Runner with the Broken Heart. For the first 12 days, the article was only available on the NETC website. The article was viewed over 22,000 times and generated 275 Facebook shares, along with over 500 retweets.
Two days after we published the article, Hope Dunbar, a Nebraska-based folksinger, wrote a song based on the article. She posted a video on Facebook singing the song. That video has been viewed over 6,000 times. She's now working with another songwriter to improve the song - because this is what you do when you hear Noah's story. You try harder.
On Friday, October 19 - during the Nebraska State high school XC meet - the Cross Country Probs (@crossprob) Twitter account with 80,000 followers tweeted a link to the article that I posted on www.ovalsandtrails.com. In the first four days on the Ovals website, the article has generated over 70,000 views and 28,000 Facebook shares.
Noah's story has touched the national and international running community. I received an e-mail from a British expat living in Asia who was moved by the article. A friend shared that there are college scholarships available for kids like Noah who have heart issues. A marathoner in Honolulu found the family and offered to buy Noah a watch with an integrated EKG. An XC mom in southern Oregon asked if she could buy a McCool Junction cross country t-shirt. Parents have shared stories on Twitter and Facebook about their kids who also run even when they have every reason to avoid it. A TV producer even chimed in that Noah's story belongs on film.
As the original article noted, Noah has made people cry, certainly thousands of people by now. And here's the interesting part: all of this reaction - the retweets, nearly one hundred thousand readers, the outpouring of love from within and beyond the running community - still pales in comparison to Noah's story.