Mansfield natives, David Roche, Stephen Parker, Gillian Furey, Eddie O'Brien, Marsha Whitman, Mike Riley, Matt Birnie and Deana and Rich DeSilva are lacing up their sneakers and gearing up to run the streets of Boston on April 21st at the 118th Boston Marathon. This group of runners may have various levels of running experience, but there is no doubt that they all share the same determination to cross that finish line as a part of the marathon team organized by the Joe Andruzzi Foundation (JAF), a non-profit established by former New England Patriots offensive guard and cancer survivor Joe Andruzzi and his wife Jen.
These six athletes will be a part of 47 “Team JAF” runners tackling cancer with each stride when they takes to the streets of Boston this April for the 118th Boston Marathon – all to raise money in support of the Foundation’s mission of alleviating cancer’s financial burdens on patients, as well as funding critical pediatric brain cancer research at Boston Children’s Hospital. Those wishing to help this group of runners reach each of their individual fundraising goals, visit bit.ly/TeamJAF14.
Though they are in the thick of training for the Marathon, the only cramps this group will feel on Thursday, April 17 will be from laughing too hard – as funnyman Lenny Clarke and a cast of New England’s best comics host an “(Up)Beat Comedy Night” fundraiser in Walpole.
All proceeds raised through the event – hosted at Raffael’s (1601 Main Street, Walpole, MA) will support Team JAF. The night of comedy will also spread the Foundation’s (Up)Beat philosophy, which stresses the importance of a positive attitude in the face of adversity. Tickets are $50 and can be purchased online at bit.ly/UpBeatComedy.
The Foundation will also return to Forum Restaurant on Boylston Street for its Marathon watch party, where the team and JAF supporters also gathered in 2013. This year’s event is of special significance to the Foundation and Forum, as it will celebrate the resiliency of Team JAF, the venue and the City of Boston in the wake of the 2013 Marathon bombings – one of which occurred immediately outside of the 2013 watch party. A limited number of tickets are available at bit.ly/ReturntoForum – 25% of proceeds raised through ticket sales benefit the Foundation, as well as 20% of the events bar sales.
For more information on the Joe Andruzzi Foundation, visit www.joeandruzzifoundation.org.