Hello, my name is Sean Eversole.
"The goal I’ve decided on for 2023 is simple: dedicate this year’s personal running miles to honoring my sister Erin by helping to raise awareness of PPCM - Peripartum Cardiomyopathy, so that just maybe we might be able to help another family avoid a similar tragedy such as ours."
I like to say that ultra running has become my personal form of therapy over the past few years.
In the 13,000 plus miles I’ve run since my younger sister Erin’s death in 2016 I’ve spent an innumerable amount of time shuffling one foot in front of the other all while feeling frustrated, angry, happy, sad, lost, found, confused, depressed and everything in between… I’ve also had this overwhelming sense of guilt over the notion that I was given a heart in this life that could sustain such efforts as I do pursuing my passion of ultra running while Erin’s heart wasn’t able to last much longer beyond the birth of her third child, giving out from the condition known as PPCM - Peripartum Cardiomyopathy just a mere six weeks after giving birth to Scarlett and two weeks before what would have been her 32nd birthday.
I get to turn 42 this year.
One thing I am sure of by now is that we may not be meant to ever understand exactly why this kind of stuff happens in this life… there may very well never be a “good” answer. After all, if the years continue to teach us anything, it’s that sometimes tragedy just happens. The anger and confusion brought about by any feeble attempts to try and understand those tragedies and make sense of something that never will doesn’t serve us any purpose other than to elongate the torment and unrest in one’s very own soul.
What we can do moving forward though is share the lessons surrounding our own personal tragedies to help others.
So the goal I’ve decided on for 2023 is simple: dedicate this year’s personal running miles to honoring my sister Erin by helping to raise awareness of PPCM so that just maybe we might be able to help another family avoid a similar tragedy such as ours.
I remember writing in Erin’s eulogy six years ago that every life, just like any other story, has a beginning, a middle and an end … that although she may be gone from this earth her story should not end there.
I’m hoping we can do the part of continuing her story now so that other women and their families don’t have to go through the same kind of tragedy my family did… whether you can help by donating to the PPCM FUND directly via the link below or simply by telling Erin’s story and raising awareness about the signs, symptoms and prevention of PPCM, I am forever grateful.
Sean Eversole’s Tentative 2023 Racing Calendar:
-> Watch LIVE: Bib #19 https://hurt100.com/runner-tracking-2023/#
- 14-15 JAN - HURT100 in Oahu, HI
- 01-02 APR - Umstead100 in Cary, NC
- 12-13 MAY - Hellbender100 in Old Fort, NC
- 16-20 JUN - Tahoe 200 in Homewood, CA
- 02-03 SEP - Wildcat Ultra 100 in Pensacola, FL
- 28-29 OCT - Javelina Jundred in Fountain Hills, AZ
- 09-10 DEC - Beast of the East 100 in Kings Mtn, NC”
- Erin’s Eulogy:
“ So how do you tell the story of Erin Michelle Avery? Just like any other story, I imagine it’s important to have a beginning, middle, and an end.
If we start with the beginning, like any good story should, we’d start the story of Erin in July of 1984. It’s always easy to remember the year each of my siblings were born in because we were all equally spaced apart at 3 year intervals, a fact my mother often times reminded us of and that I’m pretty sure she really is quite proud of. Our parents loved having four children more than anything in the world and Erin was the second daughter and third child overall making her the real “Middle” child in the Eversole family equation growing up. The year 1986 was when our family moved to Cary and it is here where our parents worked harder than anyone I know to create the foundation and roots that would allow us all to have the opportunities to figure out who we each were as individuals coming into our own. In 1987, the family added Lindsay to the equation and for the next 30 years our individual life stories as siblings would intertwine at various paces and through different dimensions but the one everlasting constant between us all was the unconditionally loving home our parents provided that still serves as all of our “home base” today.
Even as adults with children of our own now it’s still impossible for me or my siblings to walk through the hallways at our parent’s home and not re-live those earliest childhood memories that undoubtedly shaped the people we’ve become. If the walls could speak in our home today I’m sure they may tell you about how even though my parents had 3 little girls, Erin truly was my father’s one and only “Frincess,” a term which stemmed from the combination of long curly hair and deep froggy voice she possessed in her earliest years.
Oh yes, Erin truly is the very definition of a daddy’s girl. There’s no denying the fact she’s had my father wrapped around her finger ever since the first time she managed to get the word “daddy” out. And while she may have started with that froggy voice as a young child, Erin’s voice eventually grew and changed over the coming years to develop into one of the most beautiful singing voices that even she'd be quick to tell us was worthy of winning American Idol. She was always singing. If she wasn’t singing she’d be humming. But not many people probably are aware of just how beautiful her voice really was. In high school, as a member of the school chorus, she scored a solo verse in their live performance of Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey’s “When you believe”, a feat she flawlessly executed with the amount of poise and beauty that still blows us all away to this day. We may have always been too quick to tell her to give it a rest when she would sing nonstop in and around the house, most often times directing her falsetto driven runs into the ears of her only younger sibling Lindsay.
So let’s fast forward to get into the middle of the story.
The middle of a story is often times my favorite part. It’s here where you usually find the most exciting chapters yet. The main character has overcome countless struggles and finally comes into her own where life is finally starting to make sense and everything is beginning to come together to make that fairytale ending eventually come true.
Erin’s middle chapters are no different. She struggled for many years to find out what it really was she wanted to do in life. Ultimately though it would be these struggles and constantly changing obsessions with what to do in life that would eventually combine and shape her into who she would become further down the line. She had a very quiet way of looking at herself that always kept her from believing she had as many talents as she really did. Her selflessness often times had her putting less time caring for herself and more time worrying about everyone else. I remember when she pursued a career in hair dressing. While I never thought growing up I’d be so willing to give her such freedom as I did with a pair of scissors and my hair, the skills she quickly managed to acquire was a testament to just how really good she was with her hands, though she would never claim it. Her ability to mastermind a shopping spree fueled by coupons and the desire to walk out of a supermarket with a full shopping cart and a negative balance was something to be marveled at. A girl who may have never had the patience for math homework growing up somehow developed “a beautiful mind” when it came to clipping, organizing, and making full use of every coupon trick in the book to go shopping.
It wasn’t until she got her hands on a sewing machine and a couple of YouTube videos where she taught herself how to sew that we really saw some of Erin’s truest talents come to light. The leaps and bounds that Erin made through her sewing obsession over the last few years were phenomenal to say the least. She made clothes, bags, wallets, you name it… If it was made of fabric, she could create it.
But these… These weren’t the things that made Erin happiest in life.
It’s in these middle chapters when Erin fell in love with her husband Chris and they got pregnant with their first child Connor that we really got to see who it was that Erin was really meant to be and we saw her in her happiest form. To be a mom meant everything to Erin. It was also becoming a mom which led to her becoming best friends with our own mom. Suddenly you could see a change in her views on what was important in life. Over the next few years Chris and Erin would have another boy, Grayson, and seeing the skills be used that Erin had developed over the years to help raise these boys was an amazing thing to observe.
Being a wife and mother was her final obsession. And she was great at it.
She devoted everyday of her life to raising these boys with Chris. She’d use her hair dressing talents to trim their hair, she’d sew their outfits from scratch at a level of quality that would rival any brand name on the market today, and she would take neighborhood markets by storm with her whirlwind of couponing in order to help provide for these boys that would leave grocery clerks speechless. She didn’t only devote her time and skills to her own family though. Erin was always the most constant in being there for everyone. Raising two boys is no easy task but even so Erin would always still find time to sew clothes for all her nephews or purses and diaper bags for her sisters. Family was everything to Erin. When Lindsay and Joe had their son Zachary last year, Erin, despite her hectic life raising two boys of her own drove 2 hours one way just to spend less than an hour monitoring his condition in the NICU during the first hours of his life before turning around and heading back another 2 hours to her own busy life. Growing up as siblings you never realize the importance you’ll play in each other’s lives until you watch one another become parents yourselves.
7 weeks ago to the day we all had the honor and privilege of watching Erin give birth to the very first little princess to enter our family since this story began so long ago. Scarlett Avery was born on May 27th and to say she took this family by storm would be a gross understatement. Just like Erin had had the ability to wrap our father around her finger at an early age, Scarlett did the same to Chris but without ever having to say a single word. This is when the middle of the story by its very nature is designed to take flight and the most exciting of times begin to happen for the characters involved but sometimes in life for no reason we’ll ever be able to understand a storyline decides to take an unexpected turn.
Last Saturday was undoubtedly the worst day our family has ever experienced.
Erin may not be able to sing us a song today or cut our hair tomorrow or show us the latest secrets in couponing next week. She may not be able to bond as she often times would with a complete stranger over favorite sewing patterns in her neighborhood Joanne Fabrics or give her “mommy advice” on any online mom chat groups in the middle of the night while other mothers experiencing the same struggles seek her company but this is far from where her story ends.
Erin touched more people in this world than she’ll ever know. A girl who probably would have told you last week that she had no friends would not believe it today if she saw the amount of love, support and outreach that our family has received in her honor. She was far more special than she ever got credit for.
We were all stunned by her sudden passing and desperate for answers to this inexplicable tragedy. And while nothing about this makes any sense in this moment, somehow her cause of death being an enlarged heart is reassuring to all of our own hearts, for we always knew Erin had the biggest heart in the family, a heart big enough to love and be loved by everyone she encountered.
So you may just say that her heart was so big that it simply ran out of room on this earth. But that does not mean her story is over. Her heart continues to beat on this earth through her husband Chris and her precious children Connor, Grayson, and Scarlett. It continues to beat through all of us who’s lives she changed by her never ending kindness and selflessness.
Our family can never thank you all enough for the generosity and kindness that you have shown us this week during these darkest of times. It is through this love and kindness that Erin’s legacy will endure… It is through this love and kindness that her story lives on forever.”
Thank you! ...especially if you've gotten this far, and if you have, please consider giving...
~ Awareness Day Is Everyday! Early diagnosis saves lives; Save a mom, donate today!
❤︎ PPCM FUND INC.