Creedon ’19 Running Boston Marathon to Benefit Martin Richard Foundation
When more than 30,000 runners take their first step of the 26.2-mile journey from Hopkinton to Boston’s Boylston Street, among that throng will be a number of Assumption alumni and at least one student.
Meaghan Creedon ’19, a marketing major and English writing minor from Marshfield, is running her second marathon—her first in Boston—for a greater purpose than personal accomplishment. She is one of a handful of runners who comprise a team running to raise funds for and awareness of the Martin Richard Foundation. The Foundation was established in memory of the youngest of the three victims of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, eight-year-old Martin Richard, and “provides opportunities for young people to learn, grow and lead through volunteerism and community engagement.”
“My main source of inspiration for this marathon is Martin,” said Creedon. “At our team kick-off event, we received bracelets that say ‘Martin Richard Foundation – Choose Kindness.’ I have not taken that bracelet off since I received it that day, and I don’t plan to even after the marathon passes. Every time I am on a run checking my Garmin watch to see what mile I am at or what my current pace is, I see that bracelet. It reminds me that I am running for him – and the peace, kindness, and what that little boy stood for.”
Creedon ran her first marathon—the 2016 Bay State Marathon—confident that she could someday run the world-renown Boston Marathon. Three years later, she will find herself toeing the start line in Hopkinton for what is predicted to be a cold and soggy Boston Marathon. For Creedon, it is the legacy of a young boy who tragically lost his life that will keep her going during the grueling 26.2-mile trek.
“I spoke with a friend who ran for the Martin Richard Foundation in 2018 and she told me that if I was going to run for any team, it should be in Martin’s honor,” explained Creedon. “The passion that she spoke with when she was telling me about the Foundation is what drove me to apply, and that is why I am so excited to be running on Monday.”
Training for a marathon requires intense preparation – both mental and physical. Throughout her training regimen, Creedon drew upon the cause for which she was training for inspiration and encouragement.
“What motivated me was the fact that every training run and dollar fundraised was for something bigger,” said Creedon. “Something bigger than simply running 26.2 miles. I am running 26.2 miles for a foundation that is so much more.”
Creedon endured a number of challenges during her months of training, including a foot injury that would keep her off the running paths for a few weeks in February. Though frustrating, Creedon said, “What drove me through this injury was reminding myself that I was going through these hurdles for Martin.”
She added that the most challenging feat was balancing her training while also maintaining her academics as a senior at Assumption. “Training and fundraising have been a full-time job in themselves, on top of job hunting for post-graduation, doing well in classes, and being involved on campus,” Creedon said. “But all of the time and energy have been worth it and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Plus, coffee and I have grown incredibly close over the last few months.”
In addition to the Martin Richard Foundation, Creedon has received a steady flow of support from her friends at Assumption, who gave her a pasta party on Sunday night in her dorm room. She said her friends and roommates have donated to the Foundation and cheered her on during training runs. While Creedon makes her way from Hopkinton to downtown Boston, she’ll be looking for some familiar faces along the course–many of them education majors enjoying school vacation week who are excited to set up camp along the marathon route to cheer her on.
“I am truly so lucky and grateful that I have these amazing people backing me up,” she said. “I cannot wait until I run by them on the course!”
Following months of training and fundraising, the only items on Creedon’s to do list are to “carb-up” in the next couple of days and take those first of many steps on Monday morning.
“Running for me is a chance to let go of my mind and just run,” explained Creedon. “To pound the pavement and take on the course that I know for sure will not only challenge me, but push me to limits that I didn’t know I was capable of reaching. I’ve trained all I can and I just have to trust in myself that I am ready – and I deserve to be on that course.”
Assumption alumni will also be running in the 123rd Boston Marathon on April 15 including:
- Taylor Ward, of Abington, who is currently pursuing a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in School Counseling, will run her first-ever marathon for the Jeff Coombs Memorial Foundation.
- Kendra Sloan ’16, of West Boylston, who is running for The Play Brigade.
- And Michaela Flaherty ’18, of Norwell, who is running with Team with a Vision. Despite being legally blind, Flaherty competed on the cross-country team while an undergraduate at Assumption.
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