SPOKANE, Wash. -

Thousands of runners crowded downtown on Sunday for the Spokane marathon and half marathon.

It's a 17 year tradition in the Lilac City but it's a new tradition for one participant who ran in honor of his sister who's fighting a terminal illness.

Tom Davis ran the half marathon in two hours and 15 minutes. He dedicated his race to his younger sister, Cat Davis.

Over the past few weeks, we've told you about Cat. She looks like a normal 24-year-old, but she's actually battling Scleroderma, an auto-immune disease that hardens her body inside and out. Without a stem cell transplant, Cat has less than a year to live.


"I've learned there are so many things I can't do and things I took for granted like working out and running and walking is one of them," Cat said.

About a month ago, Tom decided there was something he could do for his little sister. He laced up tennis shoes and hit the pavement.


"I've never done a half marathon ever in my life. When I started training for this in honor of Cat, I would think of all the people who are out there like Cat who can't do it," Tom said.

Cat might not have been able to participate but she watched from the sidelines as her brother ran the 13.1 miles in her honor.


"It makes me want to cry a little but it's awesome and I am just so appreciative that he is just on my side," Cat said.

It's a true example of brotherly love. "The whole time I was just thinking about Cat and all of the pain and suffering she has had to endure over these last few years," Tom said.

During the race, Tom wore a special shirt in honor of Cat. "The saying on the back is so true, you got to do it for those who can't," Cat said.


But there's hope that one day Cat can and when that day comes Tom will be right by her side.

Cat needs $175,000 for a stem cell transplant. She's about halfway to her fundraising goal. To find out how you can help, go to cureforcat.com.