Bay Area Proud

12-Year-Old Record-Setting Marathoner Takes on New Challenge: Saying Thanks

Jordan Ramirez recently brought his 'Thank You For Your Service' walk to the Bay Area

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Jordan Ramirez, 12, is a lot of things. Determined, patriotic, and tireless are a few words that come to mind easily. A young man of many words, however, Jordan is not. Most questions directed at him elicit, at best, single-word answers.

Jordan's actions, though, speak loudly enough to impress the adults in his life.

"I look up to him," Jordan's father, Dimas, said. "I always say if I could ever start over I'd want to be him."

Jordan is a boy who, in 2019, completed seven marathons on seven continents, becoming the youngest person to ever do it – breaking, by the way, a record set by his sister, Blanca.

But then, Jordan says, the pandemic came and his life, like all of ours, changed.

"All the races that we were doing were shut down so I decided to do something else," Jordan said.

That "something else" turned out to be a series of walks called "Thank You For Your Service."

Jordan, who ran his first road race at the age of 4, dressed as Captain America and carrying an American flag, has always admired the military and first responders. After a year that saw police and policing prominently in the headlines, Jordan wanted to show his support.

Starting near his hometown of La Puente in Southern California, Jordan has completed more than a dozen walks, visiting 125 law enforcement agencies and walking close to 300 miles. He walks dressed in military fatigues, carrying a large American flag.

This past weekend, it was San Francisco's turn. Jordan and his flag could be seen crossing the Golden Gate Bridge, winding down Lombard Street and making their way through Chinatown.

And, just like on every other walk, Jordan, who set about to thank others, is the one who receives the thanks. In San Francisco, he was greeted along his route and escorted by members of the San Francisco police and sheriff's departments and the California Highway Patrol.

"It makes me feel good that even though I'm doing something for them, they are doing something for me," Jordan said.

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