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Bruce R. Wilk, PT, OCS.

AMAA Life Member Bruce R. Wilk, PT, OCS, of Kendall, Florida, died unexpectedly on April 25, 2017, at the age of 60. Fellow AMAA Life Member Steve Morrow, DDS, and Miami runner remembers how Bruce first became involved with the organization. "When he asked me how I was able to run the Boston Marathon with a non-qualifying entry, I told him about the American Medical Athletic Association. To his credit, not only did Bruce become a member to run Boston [he completed eight in a row], he also spoke at the organization's Boston and Marine Corps Marathon symposiums, wrote many articles for the AMAA Journal and became an editorial member for the publication, joined the AMAA board of directors, and developed the 'Running Shoe Database' to help members find shoes to better match their needs."

Bruce opened his practice Orthopedic Rehabilitation Specialists in 1985, which remains one of Miami's only independently owned private practice physical therapy clinics. In 2000, he opened The Runners High, a retail running specialty shop, and soon became an expert in recognizing and educating others on how to identify manufacturing flaws in running shoes. He was even featured on multiple news programs, including a segment on ABC national news focusing on "how to buy perfect running shoes." As Morrow recalls, "Bruce's expertise in his profession, coupled with his enthusiasm and energy, was exceeded only by his extensive knowledge of it."

Bruce's daughter Tracy recalls her father in a way that many of us also remember him. "He was one of a kind." She also adds, "My Dad was a legend. He lived My, and he taught all of us--my older sister Rachel and my Mom--how to live. He gave me my work ethic, sarcasm, love of music, and love of food which led me to become a chef in NYC. He took my sister Rachel under his wing and taught her how to swim, bike and run, always making it fun and not pressuring her to compete. She is now an accomplished marathon runner and triathlete. His motivation and enthusiasm even propelled me to complete my first half marathon. My Dad was also lovingly supportive of my Mom when she was diagnosed with breast cancer and as she moved through her recovery, he encouraged her to become a marathon walker."

"My father was incredibly busy with his practice and running shoe store, but he still found time to train for marathons and triathlons, including four Ironman races. And most importantly, his family was always his first priority," says Tracy. "I am a lucky woman to have been his daughter."

Rest in peace, Bruce. Donations in his memory can be made to The Ironman Foundation, 3407 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, Tampa, Florida 33607.

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Publication:AMAA Journal
Article Type:In memoriam
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 22, 2017
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