Ironcology was created in May of 2014 as a platform for one physician, named Jonathan Feddock, to combine his talents as a long distance triathlete, with his passion for providing the best cancer care possible to patients in the state of Kentucky. Dr. Feddock is a radiation oncologist at the University of Kentucky, where he specializes in the treatment of Breast, Gynecologic, and Pediatric cancers. His goal was to raise $200,000 to be applied as the downpayment for a new radiation implant procedure suite at the Markey Cancer Center. Dr. Feddock arranged with the race directors of the 2014 Ironman Louisville triathlon race to allow him to be the final person to enter the water, and thus start the race. He had independently raised pledges over the preceding months for how many people he could pass throughout the day. Despite giving nearly a one hour headstart to most athletes, Dr. Feddock caught 1,977 out of the 2095 athletes. That single day’s effort successfully raised over $54,000. With continued persistence through social media and the generation of regional awareness, additional donations have now helped Ironcology to raise nearly $142,000 since its inception in June of 2014.
Thanks to a very low operating budget which is essentially limited to the cost for startup, Ironcology can successfully claim that 0.997 of every dollar donated goes directly to benefit patient care.
The current project of raising funds for the radiation implant suite continues, but considering the initial success of this fundraising initiative, Dr. Feddock plans to expand Ironcology for the upcoming years. At least for 2015, Ironcology plans to expand to include a small triathlon team consisting of cancer survivors – each using triathlon as a means of battling back from their cancer. Pending its success, this may expand further… In the meantime, the focus of the Ironcology team will be to have fun racing triathlons, discuss our highs and lows along the way, share our stories in order to raise awareness for cancer care, and hopefully continue what started out to be a successful fundraiser that will focus on funding selected annual projects at the Markey Cancer Center, promoting a healthy lifestyle, and celebrating cancer survivors.