Monday, March 18, 2013

Featured Runners: Marathon 2013

MassGeneral Marathon Team Fighting Kids' Cancer . . . One Step at a Time

Marathon Update

Our thoughts are with all of the runners, families and spectators, especially our Mass General Marathon family, following the tragedy on what is such a special day for our beloved Boston.
Update on Mass General Treating Boston Marathon Patients
How to Talk to Kids Following the Boston Marathon Explosion
Caroline Armington, running for Angel, age 5, Wilms tumor

“ I am a Certified Child Life Specialist at the MassGeneral Hospital for Children Center for Pediatric Hematology-Oncology. I witness the impact of crucial childhood cancer research as well as the benefits of supportive, quality of life services for children and their families. I am inspired by running for a cause greater than myself and in honor of a very special little boy. Five-year-old Angel, who has shown an incredibly playful spirit throughout his treatment, is a true inspiration and I am humbled to run in his honor. I eagerly anticipate the joy of seeing all those gathered at mile 20 which will give me the courage and strength to complete the following and final 6.2 miles!”

Megan Hall, running for Izzy age 15, Lymphoma

“Running the Boston Marathon has been a long-term personal goal. This is my first Boston Marathon. I am honored to run for the Mass General Marathon Team and to raise money to support the fight against pediatric cancer, to help better the lives of children and their families affected by cancer and to also honor my grandmother who passed away from cancer. I am inspired by the tremendous courage of my patient partner, Izzy, and everyone affected by cancer. Izzy is a very outgoing, friendly, and strong person and she is very special because of her courage and bravery battling Lymphoma. I am looking forward to seeing Izzy and my family cheering me on at Mile 20 to help me complete the final 6.2 miles of the Boston Marathon!”

Rachael Higgins, running for Charlotte, age 17, sarcoma

“I am a pediatric nurse on Ellison 17 and one of my life goals has always been to run the Boston marathon. Since I work at MassGeneral Hospital for Children and take care of many of these patients, running on this team is something really special and meaningful for me. My patients inspire me as a runner. Charlotte, my patient partner, inspires me both as a nurse and a marathon runner. She is the coolest and sweetest 16 year -old I know. She is beautiful, brave and resilient. I’m most looking forward to passing the 20 mile mark, seeing Charlotte and crossing the finish line!”

Scott Hilt, running for Matt, age 19, sarcoma

“I want to make a difference by building awareness, raising funds for research and a cure while inspiring and bringing hope to children who are currently fighting this disease. The patient-partner program has made this experience personal, impactful and life changing. Cancer hasn’t affected my life or my family but learning about the personal battle my patient partner, Matt, fought, the type of world class support and treatment Mass General Hospital for Children provided, their victories, and the amazingly positive outlook he and his family kept has been truly inspirational. Matt is planning to attend college this Fall and on March 19th Matt celebrated his 19th birthday…cancer free! I’m thankful for the opportunity to contribute to and make a difference in the fight against pediatric cancer.”

Erica Masini, running for Joaquim, 19 months, Retinoblastoma

“I’m a project manager for MassGeneral Hospital for Children and I’m a rookie marathon runner. I’m inspired by my patient partner, Joaquim. Even though he has been through chemotherapy and radiation in his short life, you wouldn’t know it because his curiosity and smile brighten any room. He is just a happy little boy who loves cars, trucks and soccer. His strength and resilience inspire me to keep going. I can’t wait to see the Mass General volunteers and Joaquim, family and friends at Mile 20. Being surrounded by love and support on such a special day will make it one of the most memorable moments of my life.”

Bonnie Monahan, running for CJay, age 19, Lymphoma

“A marathon has always been on my bucket list. I turned 50 and thought I best do it soon! I thought about all those who have had and are currently battling cancer.  They inspire me to not quit, especially on the long runs or when it's snowing.  Second, my incredibly generous friends and family inspire me. Because they believe in me, I believe in myself. And CJay, my patient partner, inspires me. His positive attitude is contagious! CJay is a strong brave young man who loves his family.I believe that each one of us can make a difference in the fight against cancer--be it running, volunteering, cheering and or donating. All these actions help bridge the gap between the hope and reality of finding a cure for cancer and provide hope and support to those battling cancer.”

Kenny Shann, running for Amanuel age 4, Leukemia
Kenny Shann, running for Amanuel age 4, Leukemia

“I’m the Director of Perfusion Services in the Division of Cardiac Surgery at Mass General Hospital. I’ve always enjoyed running and became highly motivated to train for the Boston Marathon this year knowing my efforts would help raise money for fighting kids’ cancer. I loved meeting Amanuel, my patient partner. He likes hot sauce on his spaghetti and likes to play with slime. He is an adorable child who is full of life! I’m most excited to meeting Amanuel, my wife and five children after the race!”

Margo Smith, running for Kim, age, 20, lymphoma

“I've been running for about 12 years now. I ran my first marathon in 2008, and I have done a few more since then but I can't wait to run my 1st Boston Marathon! My patient partner, Kim, is truly an amazing young woman. She doesn't let the negative things in life define her, but rather she surpasses them and stays focused on her goals. I think back to when I was her age, and I didn't have nearly the same amount of maturity or dedication. During my Boston Marathon training, the patients of Mass General and their families have truly inspired me to dig deeper and push through fatigue or simply to get out the door when I'd rather sit on the couch. I am not only honored to be running for such a great cause, but I am grateful to be a part of the Mass General team.”

Howard Weinstein, running for Carson, age 15, Lymphoma

“I’m the Chief of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology at MassGeneral Hospital for Children so I know firsthand the value of the money raised by our runners in supporting the mission of the childhood cancer program at MassGeneral Hospital for Children. I’m inspired by the opportunity to honor one of my patients, or a friend or family member and that is more than enough to get me from Hopkinton to Boston. My patient partner, Carson, always maintains a great attitude and focus on getting better and at the same time he keeps up with his usual everyday life that includes school and competitive squash. I’m most looking forward to stopping at Mile 20 to get hugs from Carson and my family.”

Karin Sachs Wood, running for Ronnie, age 8, brain tumor

“In my line of work, I don’t always have the opportunity to feel as though what I am doing is truly making a difference and running this marathon for Ronnie is one small way I can. This marathon started as a personal challenge and it has grown to be much more. Ronnie, my patient partner, and all of the Mass General Hospital for Children staff and supporters have made this race so meaningful for me. Ronnie is a beautiful young boy. There is nothing about his attitude, demeanor or behavior that would indicate he has any more on his mind than a typical 8 year old boy. It is a very special person that can live their life normally given those circumstances. He is happy with life and that energy and positive attitude rubs off on those around him. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to take part in this greater mission.”

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