family and friends,
to believe that nearly a decade has past since I sent out my first
“marathon letter.” For those of you who have lost count,
on Monday, April 16th, I will be running the 111th Boston Marathon,
my tenth in a row as a member of the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge
Suffice to say,
it’s been an amazing ride. Nearly four years ago, I married
my favorite running partner, Tom, after being introduced to him
at a Thanksgiving Day road race in 1998. Since my first marathon,
I’ve moved six times, most recently an hour south of Boston
in Plymouth, so now I train on the flats of the Cape Cod Canal instead
of the hills of Newton. I’ve changed careers a few times and
earned my MBA after four long years of part-time classes at Boston
College. I’ve kept up a notoriously busy schedule between
business travel, board commitments, and generally having a good
time. And throughout those years, you have fed my love of a good
challenge and helped me to raise more than $70,000 for cancer research
at Dana-Farber. Thank you for your support and encouragement!
been home to amazing advancements in cancer research and treatment
over the past decade. An incredible drug called Gleevac came from
research at Dana-Farber (as well as MIT, where I work) and is used
not only to treat leukemia patients, but also patients with a previously
incurable digestive-tract cancer. Another drug, Endostatin, can
shrink tumors by cutting off their blood supply. Investigators discovered
a single gene that, when defective, is the most common source of
inherited breast cancer. Additional genetic research has uncovered
proteins and gene abnormalities that have lead to advanced detection
and prevention of a wide variety of cancers. But let me share a
more personal story of what your support has meant.
I drove by Fenway
Park today on my way to a board meeting at Dana-Farber. On the light
posts along Brookline Avenue, there are banners hanging, commemorating
more than fifty years of Boston Red Sox support of the Jimmy Fund.
On one side is a photo of slugger David Ortiz with a tiny girl dressed
in pink, bald as can be. A cancer patient.
Well, that little
girl is my patient-partner, Amber DaRosa, now a healthy young lady
who has finished the last mile of the Boston Marathon with me ever
since. She is living proof that every mile I run is worth your support.
100% of your tax-deductible donation funds Barr Program researchers
at Dana-Farber, ensuring novel approaches in basic cancer research.
Nearly a decade
is complete, but I’m not. Here’s to another ten years!
With thanks and
PS: My letter is late this year, but I will be collecting donations
through the end of May. It is important to me, however, that I continue
my tradition of wearing the names of your loved ones on my marathon-day
singlet. So please drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
before April 14th with your submissions. And check out pictures
and letters from previous years at http://www.racedirectors.com/H/marathon.html