A team of 100 runners affiliated with the Martin Richard Foundation are training hard for this month’s BAA Boston Marathon, set for April 17. The foundation’s team— affectionately known as Team MR8— includes 18 Dorchester residents who are all raising funds to aid the Fields Corner-based organization, which is devoted to keeping Martin’s peace-filled message alive through good deeds and philanthropy.
Martin, 8, was killed and his family members were injured when two terrorists detonated a pair of homemade bombs near the finish line of the city’s marathon in 2013.
The Dorchester contingent that has been fundraising and training to cross the finish line this year is Eoin Cannon, Monica Davis, John Delano, Pat Doherty, Dianne Lescinskas, Michael McCarthy, Rachel Moo, Kathleen Mullen, Cailin Pagel, Patrick Ryan, Talia Siravo, Jack Wu, Laura and Peter Oggeri, Sheryl Patel, Pat Brophy, Derek Mourad and Steve Wilkins.
As in years past, a larger group of runners will gather at the Eire Pub in Adams Village to run a mile loop on Saturday, April 15 at 5 p.m. All are welcome to join in the run in a solidarity with the Richard family and Team MR8. Many of the team members are also planning individual events aimed at building awareness and raising funds. Each runner on the team is committed to raising at least $2,000 for the foundation.
Collectively, Team MR8 has already raised $549,752 out of their $750,000 goal for 2017— making them one of the top fundraising teams participating in the BAA Boston Marathon.
“All Team MR8 runners have access to professional training and fundraising support from team manager Susan Hurley, founder of Charity Teams, Inc., a North Andover, Massachusetts based company that helps small non-profits grow through athletic fundraising,” according to the Team MR8 website.
Talia Siravo, a first grade teacher at Saint John Paul II Catholic Academy in Lower Mills, was a spectator on Bolyston Street waiting for her fiancé to cross the finish line when the bombs went off on Patriots Day, 2013.
“I remember feeling heartbroken and filled with impossible questions,” she wrote. “Nothing seemed fair. However, in the weeks and months that followed, I remember seeing something incredible. In the midst of heartache and pain, a community banded together to help one another. I made a silent promise to myself to run the Boston Marathon and so my running journey began. “For the past 3 years I have run many races,” Siravo wrote. “I feel blessed to run my most important race for Team MR8.”
Siravo has already surpassed her goal of $7,500 for Team MR8—raising $11,271 to date.
Cailin Pagel’s is running her first-ever marathon and she’s already beat her goal of raising $7,500 for Team MR8. She’s hauled in $9,326 in pledges, according to her fundraising page.
“Team MR8 honors values that have been instilled in myself from as far as I can remember,” she wrote. “They are a huge support to local sports organizations and for myself sports have always been a huge part of my life. I believe that the coaches and teammates that I was so lucky to spend so much time with growing up really helped mold me into the person I am today. It feels so good to be part of a team again.”