Oakland Tribune Outtakes

Notes from Oakland, Berkeley and in between

Piedmont man will run for boy who can’t walk

By kbender
Wednesday, May 21st, 2008 at 4:06 pm in Uncategorized.

Like so many people in the East Bay, Steve Sidney doesn’t know Christopher Rodriguez, the 10-year-old Oakland boy who was paralyzed by a stray bullet during a piano lesson earlier this year.

Still, Sidney wants to help.

He’ll do his part on Sunday, running 59 laps around Piedmont’s Witter Field track — one lap for each of the years he’s been alive — and asking for donations for his efforts running about 15 miles in 2 ½ hours.

Child’s play.

“I generally run 30 to 35 mile a week,” he said. “It will be work but it’s not like I’m starting from zero.” He said he may do the 59 laps alone or with a few buddies from his informal running group.

He’s raised $4,500 so far but hopes people will donate at http://christopherrodriguez.blogspot.com/. Click on the Run Steve Run fund-raiser to pitch in .10-cents a lap, $59 or whatever you can afford.

Christopher was taking a piano lesson at the Harmony Music School in Piedmont on the evening of Jan. 10 when a bullet pierced the wall of the music school, tore through a piano and hit him, damaging his spleen and kidney and severing his spine, doctors said.

He spent nearly eight weeks in the hospital recovering and returned home in March.

The man who police say shot him, Jared Adams, is awaiting trial on charges of attempted murder and robbery, among other felonies.

Police say fired the gun during a botched robbery at the Chevron accross the street. In a split second, he ruined his own life and dramatically changed the life of a boy who will likely never walk again.

Since getting out of the hospital in March, Christopher has returned part-time to Crocker Highlands Elementary School where he is a fifth grader. He started taking piano lessons again — at new school — and was filmed recently by Nickelodeon cable TV for a show on gun violence.

Sunday’s event — “Run, Steve, Run” or the Rodriguez Rehab Run will go from 8:30 to 11 a.m. on Sunday at Witter Field at the bottom of the Piedmont High /Middle Schools complex, which is located at 800 Magnolia. Ave. From Grand Ave., take Wildwood Ave., then Magnolia, and finally El Cerrito Ave. The parking lot is at the end of El Cerrito Ave.

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