SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Sports

October 4, 2012

Cancer survivor Hird running to give back

(Continued)

This is the 12th year the race has been held. The course is 13.1 miles long with rolling hills along a route that begins and ends at White Stadium in Franklin Park. It goes along Boston’s Emerald Necklace Park in an out and back loop. In the 10 years that Dana-Farber and the Jimmy Fund have partnered with the B.A.A. team members have raised over three million dollars. Each runner is asked to raise a minimum of $500 that will be used for adult and pediatric cancer care and research.

“I set my goal at $500 for now because I have never done a fundraiser before so I didn’t know what to expect,” said Hird. “I have never run the Emerald Necklace course before, and I am excited to do it because I’ve spent a lot of time walking in that area. I lived in Boston for a while, and it’s a big old loop that goes all the way to Fenway. From what I hear there will be several thousand people running.

“I’ve been training on my own. They had a couple of team runs, but I couldn’t make them because I tweaked my hamstring. Running is my time to decompress and think about family members both living and dead, especially the ones lost to cancer.”

Hird began running two years ago as a way to get in shape and to become healthier. He quickly found out he loved doing it.

“I just did the Wicked Half Marathon,” he said. “I’ve built up my distance to 50 miles a week. After the B.A.A. I may do the Devil’s Chase in Salem and perhaps the Turkey Trot before the racing season ends. In the future I think I might run the Boston Marathon for Dana-Farber or the Pan-Mass Challenge. I’d love to do the hundred mile bike run. Every little bit people can do to raise money to help fight cancer helps.”

For further information or to support Hird go to www.rundanafarber.org and click on BAA Half Marathon.

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