“The marathon is a charismatic event. It has everything. It has drama. It has competition. It has camaraderie. It has heroism. Every jogger can’t dream of being an Olympic champion, but he can dream of finishing a marathon.”

– Fred Lebow, New York City Marathon co-founder

On Sunday, November 1, 2015, 49,595 runners fulfilled their dreams of crossing the finish line of the NYC Marathon, and eight were heroes in our mind as they helped raise nearly $50,000 for enCourage Kids – over 200% of our goal.

NYC Marathon - MaryAnne Fraser

First time marathoner MaryAnne Verzosa Fraser

“It’s a wonderful mix of volunteers, siblings of employees, board members, and a child life specialist who has worked with our families in the hospitals,” said Executive Director Michele Hall-Duncan at the ‘Carb Up Dinner’ hosted for the runners a few days before the race. “We really appreciate it on behalf of our kids and families.”

“I always wanted to run the NYC Marathon so I appreciate the opportunity,” shared Keeley Guillerme, who’s sister used to work for the organization. “I’ve had some great experiences during the fundraising and I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart too for giving me the opportunity to help enCourage Kids.”

First time marathoner MaryAnne Verzosa Fraser, who is a Child Life Specialist at New York Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, has had a long relationship with enCourage Kids. “Working in child life, I’ve seen first hand all of the magical things that enCourage Kids does for kids in the hospital. This was my first opportunity to really give back and run my first marathon.”

Many runners who gain their spots in the marathon through charities do so because they may have missed out on getting one through the lottery. But Jennifer Valentine, who volunteers on our Friends Committee, decided to raise funds despite having already secured entry. “This will be my seventh full marathon and I usually do them for very selfish reasons, so I’m happy to be doing it for a cause I love.”

New York Road Runners encourages this type of fundraising through the hashtag #addmeaningtoyourmiles.

Thank you to all of our amazing All-Star runners from 2015:

Domingos Calaz, MaryAnne Verzosa Fraser, Laurence Gottlieb, Keeley Guillerme, Chip Holmes, David Nass, Erin Karnovsky Schonbraun, and Jennifer Valentine.

Do you dream of running the 2016 TCS NYC Marathon? Here are some dates to keep in mind:

Get more information on joining one of the spots on our enCourage Kids team! Contact slesser@encourage-kids.org