An American and a British wounded veteran – retired U.S Army Maj. Ivan Castro and Karl Hinett – are running both the 2017 Boston Marathon and the Virgin Money London Marathon to support Home Base, a Red Sox Foundation and MGH Program, and The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry’s Heads Together Campaign. 

Castro sustained life-threatening injuries and was blinded in both eyes during combat in Iraq in 2006. Hinett was just 19 when he was involved in an attack on his 26-ton Warrior Tank while serving in Iraq in 2005, resulting in burns to his hands, legs, arms and face. Between them, Castro and Hinett have spent more than 100 hours on the operating table, more than 12 months confined to hospital beds and have endured more than 100 surgeries.

They both discovered that a huge part of their recovery – both physical and mental – was through running. Combined, they have run more than 200 marathons and ultra-marathons around the globe, including the North Pole, Antarctica and the Amazon.

This month, Castro and Hinett will dedicate their miles to raise money and raise awareness for the mental well-being of veterans in both the U.S. and the U.K. With these two marathons, the two veterans are keen to build on the great work already taking place across the country and around the globe, to ensure people feel comfortable with their everyday mental well-being, feel able to support their friends and families through difficult times and that stigma no longer prevents people from getting help they need.

Funds raised in the U.S. by the American Friends of The Royal Foundation will directly support Home Base and its programs dedicated to healing the invisible wounds for post-9/11 veterans, service members and their families. Funds raised in the U.K. will support the Heads Together mental health projects currently in development and the work of its U.K. Charity Partners leading the way in mental health care and awareness.

Congratulations to the MGH Marathon Teams, who will be running the marathon April 17. Funds were raised this year for Pediatric Oncology and Emergency Response Teams as well as the Miles for Mass General Program – including Botswana Oncology Global Outreach, Caring for a Cure, cystic fibrosis, Down syndrome and the Lurie Center for Autism.

Read more articles from the 04/14/17 Hotline issue.