The evening before the Jimmy Fund Walk all the walkers receive this text – We’re expecting cool temps and wind for tomorrow’s Walk. Please plan to layer up! We can’t wait to see you!
Up before dawn, dressed in two long sleeve tee-shirts under my red Jimmy Fund Walk shirt, I drive an hour south to our daughter Molly’s place to meet up with Owen (10) and Max (8), my fellow walkers. I am reminded of the personal connection Hannah and I have to this fundraiser for cancer research and the care of cancer patients. At the age of four, our daughter Robyn was diagnosed with leukemia (blood cancer). The kid battled through nine doses of cranial radiation and two years of chemotherapy. Robyn just turned 41 and she’s our living proof of the value of cancer research.
Owen and Max with George, our Team Barry captain and my weekly ping pong buddy. Eight years ago George was successfully treated for squamous cell carcinoma (head and neck) cancer at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, hence our direct connection to this fundraiser.
Arriving at the Boston College in Newton, Massachusetts, Owen, Max, and I, supported by the boys’ parents, Molly and Tip, register and prepare for our 10K walk over the next nearly three hours. This morning Owen and Max have hit the mother lode of snacks. Get this, there are six refueling stations over the 6.2 miles of our walk. Favorites of the boys include Cape Cod chips, blueberry cookies, rice crispy treats, and the strawberry/banana and peach/mango Body Armor drinks.
Without further ado, here are the images as we down Commonwealth Avenue to Copley Square in downtown Boston.
Along the way I talk with Derek (above) who is walking a half-marathon to raise money. A yellow hat indicates that one is a cancer survivor. He’s now going strong for nine years. I love the phrase on the back of his hat.
As I was walking by the car behind Owen’s hat, a man pulls out his wallet and gives each of the boys a dollar. That certainly is random. When I ask why, he says, I just saw them and I wanted to do it.
With Max, Owen, and Molly in the foreground and within a mile of the finish line, we approach the Boston Strong sign, a memory of the community’s response to the horrific Boston Marathon bombing in 2013
6.2 miles later we finish at Copley Square. At the finish line, there is clam chowder (two cups for Owen), pizza, Chinese food, and a 1950s throwback – ice cream sandwiches!
Thanks to you all for I raised $5020 for cancer research and the care of cancer patients.
Amey and Bill, Amy and Linda, Andy and Sarah, Ann and Jon, Anna and Matt, Bill and Karen, Cally, Charlie and Maggie, Chris and Jenn, Clarissa and Pat, Cindy and Ann, Claudia and Bill, Corrie and Karl, Dave, Diane and Targe, Doc and Robin, Donna and George, Eric and Genevieve, Fran and Angela, Jane and Tom, Janie, Jeff and Rita, Jenny, Joanne and Neil, Karen, Kim, Laurie, Liesje, Linda and Roger, Liz and Matt, Mac, Mandy and Lisa, Maxine and Don, Mary Lynn and Wayne, Mary and Rich, Melissa and Don, Mitch and Paula, Nan, Nancy and Wayne, Nancy and Duncan, Norm, Patty and Kent, Patty and Glenn, Paul and Heather, Paul and Cam, Paula and Bob, Penny and Mitch, Peter and Cyndi, Rebecca and Derek, Richard and Barbara, Sandy, Shirley and Bob, Stacy, Steve, Susan, Suzanne and Lou, Tammy and Mike, Tara and Anthony, Tree and Scott, Wendy and Bill, and Will and Laurel.
BTW, Owen and Max raised $2405 for the Jimmy Fund.
Days before the race, I received this email from Zack Blackburn, Assistant Vice President of the Jimmy Fund Walk. You all contributed to making this happen.
Congratulations on being one of the top 250 fundraisers for the 2022 Boston Marathon® Jimmy Fund Walk presented by Hyundai. To recognize this accomplishment on Walk day, you will be wearing Top 250 Club bib #T130 and a Top 250 Club patch. Thanks for your significant contributions towards making the 2022 Jimmy Fund Walk a success. See you this weekend!
With gratitude, Zack
This first Sunday in October is another peak experience that I will remember for a lifetime, which, if I have any say in the matter, is 20+ healthy years.