In 2002 when Matthew Larson was 2 1/2 years old he was diagnosed with choroid plexus carcinoma
, a rare type of brain cancer. After nine months in the hospital, with several invasive surgeries, intense chemotherapy, and radiation, Matthew was disease-free. In 2006, he had his first recurrence. A second round of treatments led Matthew's mother Kelly, to create a foundation in his name. She wanted to help raise the awareness and funds needed to overcome pediatric brain tumors and to help the children and families affected by it. During a short remission, a close family friend, Kirsten Kincade, decided to support the foundation by competing in the 2007 Hawaii Ironman World Championship (2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, 26.2 mile run) in honor of Matthew. This gave way to the concept of "IronMatt". During Matt's battle with his third recurrence in March 2007, Kirsten told Matt that he was going to get to run across the most famous finish line in all of sport with her in Hawaii. Matthew did have one warning for her, "I can run very fast you know!"
Sadly Matthew did not make it to that finish line with her as he lost his battle with brain cancer and passed away in April 2007. Matthew’s 3 siblings and Kirsten’s four children all crossed the finish line with Kirsten in Kona Hawaii carrying life size cut outs of Matthew. Both families remain committed to the desire to help as many pediatric brain tumor patients as possible. These kids should be able to swim, bike, and run well into their 70’s instead of only to age of 7 as was the case for Matthew. .