Great Strides, Great Stories

Great Strides harnesses the power of people with a shared vision and encourages collaboration, team building, and leadership, as we pursue a cure. In this section, we’ll feature a special person or team who played an integral role in Great Strides and within their local CF community. We hope you find these stories to be inspiring as we continue to take steps towards the finish line.

Click here to meet others featured in the Great Strides, Great Stories series. 

Meet Robert Plante, Award-Winning Special Olympian and Standout Great Strides Fundraiser

Great Strides has a way of bringing together and inspiring community members, regardless of their connection to cystic fibrosis -- but sometimes, not in the way you might expect. Just ask Robert Plante, who began walking for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation 30 years ago in honor of a childhood friend who had CF.

In the 1980s, Robert began walking an average of 40 miles a day each spring going door to door to collect donations for the Foundation. A dedicated fundraiser and gold medal winning Special Olympian, Robert has made friends with countless CF fighters over his years of walking. Every new face and friend made along the way strengthens his determination to help find a cure. To date, he has raised over $300,000. 

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Because of his annual “walk”, the Northern New England Chapter saw the local Hanover Great Strides walk grow organically from his efforts. “This year we had the biggest turnout yet,” Robert said. “There were over 150 walkers, which is the most we’ve ever had.”

Even with a left hip replacement in January, Robert still managed to walk the entire route in Hanover on walk day. Although his surgery left him unable to fundraise by foot, the community was so inspired by his dedication to find a cure that they offered to drive him door to door. 

Robert is excited about the upcoming fundraising season because he knows he’s changing lives. “The money we raise goes towards research to find a cure for CF and I am dedicated to the cause,” he said. “I will continue to be dedicated for the rest of my life.”

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Great Strides, Great Stories

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Meet Robert Plante, Award-Winning Speacial Olympian and Standout Great Strides Fundraiser!

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