“Curatas Per Musica,” Latin for “Healing Through Music” is the motto of the Marathon Jam. A non-profit organization that “seeks to improve the lives of injured Veterans, First Responders and their families,” Marathon Jam’s main focus is to hold its annual namesake fundraiser. The tenth iteration of the annual “Marathon Jam” is taking place this Saturday.

According to the lead organizer, John Santa, the Marathon Jam has helped to raise over $150,000 in 13 years. This year’s Marathon Jam will benefit Fisher House, an organization that provides comfortable and convenient shelter for family members of veterans receiving medical care.

John Santa joined Aaron Keck on WCHL to discuss the Marathon Jam and play a bit of music – accompanied by Matt Lawrence of the Chapel Hill Fire Department.


With humble beginnings in VA hospitals across North Carolina, the Marathon Jam has evolved into a far-reaching effort, with individually organized events popping up as far away as Arizona and Iraq and donations to individual Fisher Houses and Fisher House National continuing to stack up. Across continents and countries, in Africa, Iraq, Afghanistan and England and in over 20 cities across the United States.

Starting at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday and going strong until 1:00 a.m. on Sunday, the Marathon Jam’s trademark 12 hours of music will be taking place at the American Legion Post 6, at 1714 Legion Road in Chapel Hill. This year, the money raised will be split equally between the Marine and Army Fisher Houses at Fort Bragg and Camp Lejeune. The Jam also helps to support other charitable causes by offering stipends supporting contributors, including Doctors Without Borders, Wags 4 Tags, Bikers Against Child Abuse and Patriot Guard.

For those who cannot personally attend the Jam, there are outreach programs that “take the jams to them.” The Marathon Jam sends artists and musicians into VA hospitals and other treatment centers to remind military service members, firefighters and police officers that they are not forgotten.