Dear Friends and Family and Supporters
On Novemebr 2nd I will run the NYC Marathon. Why? This is the big question especially given my lack of running any race nor even liking to run. My motivation and inspiration to do this is something I would never have considered before and now could never consider not having as a part of my life.
I am running to raise money and even more so awareness in the name of our friend Dylan Hockley, who was lost in the Newtown / Sandy Hook tragedy. I called Newtown home for 5 years. I was a member of a community of mothers and fathers wanting nothing more then to raise their children proudly and safely. My children were in the same age cohort as the children in Sandy Hook Elementary School and crossed paths over the years.
There is not much more to say other then that the loss of Dylan and these children and caretakers has impacted me in the most intense and haunting of ways. It has made all of us think and feel.
At last years NYC Marathon I spent the day with Mr. Ian Hockley, Dylan's dad. We cheered his runners running in the name of Dylan. More then that we talked about Dylan. We talked about mental illness. We talked about the politics of it all. We talked some punk rock. We talked sports. We talked about my children. We connected as fathers though I could never comprehend how he could stand there and do so given that his loss is beyond words. And then we went to the pub and talked some more.
After a few pints Ian patted me on the back and asked, "you'll run for Dylan next year?" "Of course" I replied.
So when Ian reminded me of this forgotten conversation 3 months ago and asked me; I said "of course."
I am so honored and proud to keep Dylan in the forefront of my mind as I take this on. The charity has a bold mission to support children with autism and related conditions to develop to their maximum potential through the use of new technology as an enabler for children on the spectrum and promoting the inclusion of children with autism and related conditions into sporting activities.
I run as much as I can. The 5 weeks with a broken wrist was especially weird and now its just the nagging injuries which humble me and keep me pushing on. I think of Dylan. I also think of Avonte Oquendo whose soul touched us all in my current community of Long Island City. I think of Avonte's linkage to Dylan in terms of autism and school safety. I think of their parents who loved them just they way they are. I run as a father who would do anything to prevent any child and parent from these unspeakable experiences. I run for my father who will proudly cheer me on.
I will run with my amazing wife Stacia who will make me so proud of her accomplishment and keeps me pushing on.
Please support me as I take on this long race with a contribution to Dylan’s Wings of Change.
No contribution is too small and I would really appreciate your sharing this email with others who may also want to help in the name of Dylan and autism. My goal is to raise $3,000 dollars and I am thankful for any of you who consider a donation. Even just words of support and understanding of the cause would be appreciated.
Thank you Friends
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