When Justin Berk, Meteorologist, was 14 years old he almost lost one of his legs to a diagnosis of bone cancer in his left tibia. He got a second opinion and discovered that he actually had a staph infection in his bone. Justin was in the hospital for nearly two months trying to regain his health. After years of therapy and treatment, he eventually recovered and was physically where he wanted to be.
Last year, Justin explained that the numbers just seemed to align: He was 41-years-old and his hospitalization happened when he was 14 – a reflection of digits and time; it had been 27 years since his hospitalization (2 x 7 = 14); it was 2014; and the length of his career on TV in Baltimore had been 14 years.
Justin decided to plan a 7-day trek across the state of Maryland between Maryland’s two largest playgrounds for the kids who just want to be kids again and play (Summit of Wisp to the Inlet in Ocean City). Each day he started with a 27-mile fast paced hike (for the years since he was ill), plus 14 or more miles of biking (for the age he was when sick). Justin did this trek for Cool Kids Campaign, which is a nonprofit devoted to improving the quality of life for pediatric oncology patients and their families by focusing on the academic, social and emotional needs brought on by a cancer diagnosis.
This year, Justin tackled the 321-mile trek again, from August 9th – 15th. On the fifth day of his trek, Port Annapolis helped Justin travel across the Chesapeake Bay aboard the Salty Miss, captained by Port Annapolis’ Mike Montgomery and slip tenant, Linda Mann, owner of Shades of the Bay.