Most 16 year olds aren’t doing what Jack Aneser does. Most 16 year olds also aren’t an Eagle Scout, have a sister who beat leukemia, or competing in spartan races – a run usually held with obstacles. But then again, Jack Aneser’s Eagle Scout project is a bit unique too.
A junior at Chaminade High School, Aneser held the first Eagle Run 5k on Sunday at Adelphi University, drawing 200 participants on St. Patrick’s Day and raising over $3,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Long Island Chapter.
His father, Kenneth Aneser, who graduated Chaminade in 1984, supported his son’s project. Holding a race isn’t exactly unfamiliar territory though for the elder Aneser, who is the race director of the Garden City Turkey Trot which is held on Thanksgiving.
“It’s a project he needed parental support from but it’s also a project that taught him some real life skills. How to meet with people, organize something, how to obtain permits,” he said. “I think it was a great experience for Jack.”
The younger Aneser currently holds a position on the Junior Board of Trustees of the Long Island Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The society is also the main beneficiary from the fundraising done during the Turkey Trot.
“I thought that would be a good beneficiary since my sister beat Leukemia when she was younger,” the younger Aneser said. “That’s also a reason I choose this, it won’t be a one time thing and keep giving to the [Leukemia and Lymphoma] society. It was pretty much my first idea…making them the main beneficiary just came naturally.”
In addition to the race he also was holding Soles for Souls, a shoe drive that sends shoes to impoverished countries.
His sister Kelly Aneser is currently a freshman at Garden City High School and was diagnosed at the age of two with leukemia, having it go into remission it a couple years later.
“This is a process that has taken a lot of time, a lot of work, a lot of paperwork and seeking approvals,” the 16-year old Eagle Scout candidate said after seeing months worth of work come together. “I probably started getting this idea in my head in October and working towards it little by little.”
In addition to his duties as an Eagle Scout and organizing the race he runs cross country and track for Chaminade.
“The project itself is tough, helping others is just a really good thing to do,” Aneser said. “Selfless is what comes to mind and it’s just a good thing.”