BENEFITING: JOE ANDRUZZI FOUNDATION
ORGANIZER: JOE ANDRUZZI FOUNDATION
EVENT: 2017 Boston Marathon
EVENT DATE: Apr 17, 2017
My family and I watched our first ever Boston Marathon in 2013 from the patio of Forum Restaurant on Boylston Street. One year prior, my wife Amy watched the Marathon from a sterile hospital room at Brigham and Women's. After a year of chemotherapy, she was undergoing a lifesaving stem cell transplant for her diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma, a rare blood cancer. We decided to celebrate her one year transplant anniversary in Boston at the Marathon. It seemed only fitting we attend the Joe Andruzzi Foundation Marathon Watch Party that was benefitting cancer patients.
We cheered all day as we watched the runners go by. I recall telling Amy, "Someday I'd like to give this a try. 26.2 miles is a long way but I ran in high school and played rugby for 16 years, I could do this". After she stopped laughing, she reminded me that I graduated high school over 30 years ago, and I had to quit rugby due to chronic calf issues. A quick dose of reality and I was back to being a spectator, which was fine with me.
By now, most know of the horrific events that took place that day. The first bomb went off just two blocks from where we were standing. My immediate thought was "too loud and too much smoke for a celebratory cannon or fireworks". Twelve seconds later the second bomb went off and I was blown back into the restaurant, lying next to Amy in a pile of broken glass, my ears ringing and blood trickling down my face and neck. My first ever Boston Marathon just took a drastic turn for the worse.
Four years later, Amy and I continue to make the mid-April trek into Boston to cheer on the runners, especially those from Team JAF. It's never a question of "if" we will go; rather "when are we leaving and where will we stay." We have grown to love the Joe Andruzzi Foundation and are truly inspired by the work they do; helping so many cancer patients and families affected by this disease. I am so honored to run for JAF at this year's Marathon and can't wait to take that final turn onto Boylston Street. I will run to honor loved ones lost to cancer, and all those fighting cancer, especially Amy, who has been through the equivalent of one hundred marathons since her cancer diagnosis 6 years ago.
Thanks for reading my story. Your donation supports the amazing Joe Andruzzi Foundation and their mission of providing financial and emotional support, hope, and a reason to smile to cancer patients and their families.