Family of 6-Year-Old Marathon Runner Speaks Out After Being Visited By Child Protective Services

Good Morning America

Most parents want their children to be healthy and happy. A lot of that can start with leading by example. For example, parents who are active and enjoy exercising will probably have children who want to be active along with them. Little kids, especially, often want to do what their parents are doing.

Parents and Tennessee residents Ben and Kami Crawford decided to run in the Flying Pig Marathon which was held in Cincinnati, Ohio, on May 1, 2022. Their kids, including their 6-year-old son, Rainier, wanted to run in the marathon too. According to the Crawfords, it was their son’s choice to run in the marathon. They did not make him run. He wanted to join the rest of his family.

The Crawfords successfully crossed the finish line together holding hands. They were proud of themselves and their children, especially Rainier. They posted pictures of themselves on Instagram before and after the race. On one post after the race, the parents reflected on the marathon writing, “On May 1 our family of 8 finished an entire 26.2 mile marathon. This is the first marathon our entire family has run together. Our 5 older kids waited for over an hour at mile 25 and after 8 hours and 35 minutes we all crossed the finish line together.”

Unfortunately, completing the marathon has not been all joy. The parents were visited by Child Protective Services (CPS) due to complaints about letting their 6-year-old run the marathon. On Instagram, the parents explained that they only let their 6-year-old run the race because he was “begging to join.” They wrote, “Both parents gave him a 50/50 chance of completing it and were ready to pull the plug at any moment if he requested it or if we viewed his safety at risk. We asked him numerous times if he wanted to stop and he was VERY clear that his preference was to continue. We did not see any sign of heat exhaustion or dehydration and honored his request to keep on going.”

The parents have found the aftermath and the visit by CPS “scary.” Watch the video below for more details about what the parents have to say about letting their son run a marathon.

Have you ever run a marathon? Do you think the Crawfords made the right decision to let their son run a marathon? Do you think there should be an age limit for running a marathon?