After Peter Kirk was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia, he found himself in the ICU at NYU Langone trying to survive double lung pneumonia. But just one year later, in 2021, Kirk finished the New York City Marathon.
The journey from the ICU to the finish line is documented in “A Life Worth Running,” a three-part docuseries developed by Digital Health Networks in partnership with Sermo and Earl Miller Productions. The series’ third installment, which chronicles Kirk’s meeting with his blood stem cell donor, was released Thursday.
Kirk said in a statement that he is “honored” to share his story from patient to survivor, because he believes it could help others in a similar position.
“My purpose in life has evolved greatly during this journey and I feel so strongly about the importance and need to pay it forward by continuing to raise money to support life-saving medical research,” he said.
Kirk’s stem cell donor, a young man named Sam, describes in the video how he signed up for Be The Match, a transplant match organization, in the hopes of giving back to the world. Be The Match gathers information from donors on potential bone marrow or blood stem cell transplants, then connects them with patients.
In the third part of the docuseries, Kirk and Sam meet, share a big hug and sit down to have a conversation about cancer, gratitude and recovery.
“You cured me. You’ve changed my life forever, and thereby the life of my wife and kids,” Kirk said in the video. “I’m trying to impact as many people as I can, to inspire people to do what they can.”
The goal of the docuseries is to provide a story of hope and inspiration to other cancer patients, according to Jon Cody, CEO of Digital Health Networks.
“Cancer touches everyone. Everyone has a story. It’s a global epidemic impacting over 100 million people,” Cody said in a statement. “‘A Life Worth Running’ combines the tradecraft of storytelling with the power of personal experience. Who better to inspire, give advice and discuss lifestyle options than someone who has been there?”