PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — For 19 years and counting, central Illinoisans gather to offer support and a sense of community to those diagnosed with a variety of brain tumors.

After Mark Linder was diagnosed with two different types of brain tumors, he wanted to create a space where survivors could support each other while raising funds for research. Linder died in 2005 at the age of 31.

“[Mark] wanted to create the Walk for the Mind purely so that other people wouldn’t feel alone,” said Stacie Hansen, Mark Linder’s sister. “There could be this vibrant community of people that you could reach out to and that your loved ones could reach out to in order to make those connections.”

His sister said he saw his dream become a reality. The walk was renamed shortly after this death.

“To celebrate his accomplishment and his legacy in creating the walk,” said Hansen. “It gives us hope to see all of the survivors show up and relying on each other.”

All proceeds are donated to the University Of Illinois College of Medicine Peoria for the brain tumor research program being led by Dr. Andrew Tsung and Dr. Kiran Velpula.

“Dr. Tsung has talked a lot about how the research being here is a huge benefit to the medical students and to him as a neurosurgeon,” said Hansen. “We think it makes better physicians and gives the people here better access to care.”

This year, the walk hopes to surpass its goal of raising one million dollars for brain tumor research since the walk’s inception.

The 19th Annual Mark Linder Walk for the Mind begins at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 25 at Peoria’s Riverplex.

If you would like to make a charitable contribution for Federal Income Tax purposes, you can donate online at our website, or you can make a check payable to “Mark Linder Walk for the Mind”. Send your donation check to:

Mark Linder Walk for the Mind
P.O. Box 5522
Peoria, IL 61601

Mark Linder Walk for the Mind is a 501 (c)(3) organization.

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