I know that many of you have heard already, but for those of you who haven’t, it is with a heavy heart that I write to tell you that Cameron Bean, a recent ZAP alumnus who was with us for 5 years, passed away last week due to injuries he sustained after being struck by a car while he was out on a run in Chattanooga. Cameron contacted ZAP in 2010 and asked about training with the group. At the time he hadn’t run fast enough to qualify for a spot on the team, but was told by Pete, “if you move to town, find a part time job, and show up to practice everyday I’ll coach you.” Well, Cameron found a place to live and was at practice the next week.
Three years later Cameron was the 10th fastest steeplechaser in the country, had qualified for the final at the US Championships, and had set the ZAP Club Record of 8:32 in the 3,000m Steeplechase. The purpose and resolve that Cameron showed in his running was evident in all aspects of his life. Within the 6 weeks that Cameron had been gone from ZAP and back home in Chattanooga he had started massage therapy school, started working with a swim coach in the hopes of improving his technique to explore the possibility of the triathlon, and launched a race day running app (On Your Mark). As a runner he got the most out of himself during his 5 years at ZAP, but that was emblematic of his life. Whether it was showing up at ZAP with 50 feet of plastic and dish soap for an impromptu slip-and-slide day or sitting down with many of you at our running camps, Cameron was always present and engaged in the moment.
More than the races he won and the times he ran, Cameron will be remembered for his passion and enthusiasm for life which he generously shared with so many. Many have reached out about making some kind of donation, and for those inclined there has been a Memorial Fund setup on Fundly.com with the intention of helping youth runners in the Chattanooga area. One idea that has gained some traction is putting on a summer camp in the area for local middle school and high school athletes.
Cameron Mark Bean Obituary
Cameron attended Alpine Crest Elementary, Red Bank Middle School, and graduated from the Baylor School in 2005. He graduated from Samford University in 2010. After college Cameron moved to Boone, NC to continue his running career with Zap Fitness where he trained and competed professionally for the past 5 years. He ran his first race at age 6 and his last race August 21, 2015 where he won the Fast Break 5K and the Moon Pie Mini Mile. He most recently was employed with Fast Break Athletics and was a student at Chattanooga Massage Institute.
Cameron grew up in Falling Water Baptist Church where he gave his life to Christ at a young age. He was currently a member of Stuart Heights Baptist Church worshipping at the Soddy Campus.
Our hearts are broken, but still we can smile. Our family was given Cameron’s life as a gift for 28 years. We are an especially close family, loving each other more than life itself, so we live with no regrets. We can continue living our lives with joy until we see Cameron again. Cameron lived every day exactly how he wanted and as if it were his last. We are blessed beyond measure.
Cameron was preceded in death by his grandfather, James D. Bean.
Cameron is survived by his parents, Steve and Lisa Bean; his brother, Chris (Leslie) Bean and was looking forward to being an uncle in May 2016. His girlfriend, Dr. Anne Moody of Blowing Rock, NC; his grandparents, John and Joyce Hewitt “Papaw and NinNin” and Lodema Bean “Mamaw”; uncles and aunts, Greg (Karen) Hewitt, Jim (Starr) Bean, Linda (Jack) Floyd and Amy (Ken) Weaver; cousins, Hillary (Matthew) Holt, Jonathan Hewitt (who he loved like a younger brother), Bonnie (Joel) Cordell & sons, Brencie (Kevin) Fox & daughters; his rescue kitty, “Nala” who hit the jackpot when she was adopted by Cameron, he loved that fluffy cat!
Thank you to the doctors and nurses in Trauma ICU at Erlanger Hospital – you went above and beyond in your care for Cameron. To Nurses – Caleb and Sherry, we want you to know your skill and compassion in Cameron’s care and your care and respect for our family will never be forgotten. And to everyone on staff in Trauma ICU, you allowed us to be with Cameron anytime we wanted to be – thank you for giving us that time.
Through Tennessee Donor Services, Cameron has already given the gift of a healthier life to 5 people. Please pray for those who received his organs.
Steve Bean Runs Ironman in Memory of Cameron