MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A Minnesota championship runner who has inspired many during her long, public fight against cancer is in grave condition.
Gabriele Grunewald’s husband says she was moved to comfort care at a Minneapolis hospital Sunday. The Star Tribune says Justin Grunewald urged his wife’s friends, fans and admirers to “send her one last message on her wall or on her phone before she heads up to heaven.”
The 32-year-old distance runner was diagnosed with adenoid cystic carcinoma — a rare form of cancer in the saliva glands — in 2009 while running for the University of Minnesota’s track and cross-country teams. Following surgery and radiation therapy, she went on to finish second in the 1,500 meters at the 2010 NCAA championships.
She then ran professionally through 2017 despite more surgeries and treatments for cancer in her thyroid and liver. She was the 2014 U.S. indoor champion in the 3,000.