DALLAS — It was a marathon finish that left multiple people feeling like winners. Ariana Luterman, 17, can be seen in photos and videos helping the women’s winner, Chandler Self, make her way to the BMW Dallas Marathon finish line.
“My motherly instincts kicked in,” Luterman said.
She was quick to add that Self “did it all on her own in the end. That grit and determination that it takes to get there…pretty amazing.”
CBS Dallas-Fort Worth reports Luterman’s finish-line act of kindness launched her into the national spotlight.
Luterman started competing in triathlons at the age of 7. At 10 years old, she was competing against adults. So she decided to parlay that attention into a way to support her second passion, which is helping homeless kids.
“At age 10, I started Team Ariana,” Luterman said. “I’ve raised over $150,000 for homeless kids.”
While she’s excited that her instant fame will allow her to talk about important causes, Luterman insists that anyone would have done the same thing during the marathon.
“I’m nothing special. Any of the other 25 kids on the relay team would have done the exact same thing if they were in my position. Any normal human would have done the same thing if they were in my position,” Luterman said. “If someone’s in pain, you’re going to help them out.”
She admits that some of the fuss has been a little fun.
“I was driving to school, and I was just trying to listen to some music, and I heard my name! Honestly, it’s been pretty overwhelming. Pretty exciting, though,” she said.
Luterman has not spoken with Self since she was whisked away from the finish line by medical staff. But, she’s glad to hear that the women’s marathon winner has recovered and is doing well.
The teenager says she has a request for the rest of us: carry the kindness forward.
“Anyone can make a difference in the life of another…and it’s so easy to make someone’s day a little bit brighter,” said Luterman. “It’s so easy to make the world a little bit of a…