Despite trials, Riverton runner succeeds
Desire, determination and hard work propelled a Riverton High School athlete to succeed, despite facing great adversity.
Riverton junior Clay Lambourne won the Utah state boys 400-meter track championship May 18, despite the death of his older sister five days earlier. Lambourne decided to run at the meet, knowing that his sister’s funeral was two days away.
“There was no doubt that I was going to run. She would not want me to miss out on that. I have some amazing family support,” Lambourne said.
Lambourne’s sister, Jackie Del Toro, passed away May 13 at the age of 22 from a rare brain tumor called Glioblastoma multiforme, a very aggressive and very rare form of cancer.
Lambourne ran a 47.76 in the 400-, a personal record, almost a full second faster than his winning time at the Region 4 championship just 10 days earlier. He then combined with Brandon Walker, McKay Christensen and Michael Bluth to win the 4 x 400- relay by more than three seconds.
“My times were better than I expected, for sure. We will get better, and next year we will be there again. [All four are underclassmen],” Lambourne said.
Lambourne also participated in the 100- meters, running an 11.11, just .01 of a second from qualifying for the finals. He placed fifth in the 200- with a time of 22.06 seconds.
Del Toro was diagnosed in January 2012, just six months following her marriage to Travis Del Toro. She first experienced blurred vision and headaches and a CAT scan revealed the tumor.
The tumor was removed, and her family was told that this type of growth rarely reoccurred. She proved to be the exception, and this April it returned. The doctors found it had metastasized to her spine.
“My family has been an amazing support to me. I have had lots of support from my entire team. We are all friends,” Lambourne said.
“The character of all of our athletes is great. Great people are those who rise above when times get tough. They do not make excuses and thrive to be the best they can be. Clay is a great kid,” Riverton track and field head coach Chase Englestead said.
Del Toro graduated from Riverton High School in 2008. She had participated in track and field and basketball.