In the early hours of January 28, 2019, one of the bright lights of the world went dark when Dustin Bernatovich left it. I had the great pleasure of getting to know him over the past few years. It was really interesting how many things we had in common. We met through triathlon, so we shared a love of this crazy sport. He was a former rescue swimmer for the US Coast Guard and my husband is a career Coast Guardsman. In this metropolitan area of over 10,000 square miles and 6.5 million people, we both found ourselves working for the City of League City. We both were registered for Ironman Texas 2018, and we both had to deal with the disappointment of being unable to race due to life circumstances (me because of injury and Dustin because of SWAT team training). We were both looking forward to IRONMAN Texas 2019 being our comeback, but sadly Dustin won’t be able to join me.
While still trying to process his sudden passing, it pressed on my heart that Dustin needed to cross that finish line at Ironman Texas, and I wanted to help him do it. So, with his family’s permission, I am dedicating my race to my friend and I am raising money for a charity that was close to Dustin’s heart: Austin Boxer Rescue.