BENEFITING: MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL HOSPITAL
ORGANIZER: MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL HOSPITAL
EVENT: 2017 Boston Marathon
EVENT DATE: Apr 17, 2017
"When life throws you a curveball, hit it out of the park."
On April 15th, 2013, I woke up early to head to Bello Field for lacrosse practice as a first year student at Tufts University. It was Marathon Monday, so after practice, my teammates and I went to the finish line on Boylston Street to support the runners. We were all staggered along the sidewalk in front of the Forum Restaurant, trying to inch our way through the crowds to be closer to the race. My teammates and I were cheering on the runners when I heard an explosion to my left. Heart racing, I said, “We have to get out of here.” The second bomb was directly behind my feet, which I did not realize until the pictures and video footage of my teammates and me emerged.
Luckily, the few steps we took away from the second bomb in those 12 seconds saved our lives. When the second blast went off, I went completely deaf. My teammates and I were thrown to the ground. My legs were covered in blood from shrapnel, my body was numb, but I started to run to escape the smoke and chaos. Two amazing young women stopped me in my tracks and wrapped their sweatshirts around my legs to stop the bleeding.
I am beyond grateful that the ambulance brought me to Mass General Hospital. Besides the amazing care the MGH staff provided me, they more importantly supported and reassured my family, especially my hysterical mother. The doctors, nurses, social workers, and child life specialists were some of the most remarkable people I have ever met in a time filled with such confusion and pain.
Eventually, my physical injuries healed, but my emotional scars worsened. Frustration filled the rest of that lacrosse season for me. The nightmares persisted and my fear of thunder and fireworks intensified. Let’s just say July 4th became my least favorite holiday. Through all of this, I am beyond fortunate and thankful to have an amazing family and close friends whose unconditional support and love helped me find resilience and growth. Most importantly, this experience brought me new perspective, new strength, and new passions. One of which is now my opportunity to run the 2017 Boston Marathon!
I have been eagerly waiting since 2013 for my chance to run Boston’s 26.2; now, as a recently retired college athlete, I am finally able to do it. My sister, Ilana, has run the Boston Marathon for MGH the past three years, and her dedication, passion, and charisma have truly inspired me. This year, we will finally be able to cross the finish line together!
As you can imagine, it is difficult to put into words our appreciation for the Mass General doctors and nurses that have helped us over the past four years. I could not be more honored to run for MGH, specifically Mass General Hospital for Children. I am raising funds and running for the hospital’s pediatric hematology-oncology program. The funds raised are directed to cancer care and research initiatives that enhance the quality of life for the hospital’s youngest cancer patients.
Please help me in my journey to the finish line!
MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL HOSPITAL wrote -
Since 1998, with the partnership of John Hancock, the Mass General Marathon Team Fighting Kids’ Cancer, One Step at a Time has raised over $12 million to support the pediatric hematology-oncology program at MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC). Funds raised are directed to cancer care and research initiatives that enhance the quality of life for the hospital’s youngest cancer patients.
Thanks in large part to the philanthropic dollars raised by this Marathon Team, MGHfC is advancing cutting-edge research, increasing the number of clinical studies to improve cure rates, and providing the best treatment possible to pediatric cancer patients. MGHfC is also focused on the quality of life of its young patients and their families through the child life program, which utilizes therapeutic play - music and art therapy to help pediatric cancer patients and their families cope emotionally and developmentally with their illnesses.
This year, more patients than ever before utilized Child-Life services, which indicates the growing popularity of the programming, the recognition of its importance, and the program’s ability to continue to expand its offerings.
We are grateful for the hard work of all of our runners and the dedication of their family and friends, as they embark on fundraising and training for the historic 26.2 mile race.