Framingham, MA – On April 17, the 121st Boston Marathon will kick off with more than 30,000 participants running the 26.2-mile route through Hopkinton, Ashland, Framingham, Wellesley, Natick, Brookline, Newton, and Boston. On behalf of the New England Acura Dealers, the official automotive sponsor of the 2017 Boston Marathon, Herb Connolly Acura is providing invitational entries to two runners from the local area; Kelsey Barry (27) from Watertown, Mass. and Peter Thomson (49) from Belmont, Mass.
This will be Kelsey Barry’s fourth time running the Boston Marathon, but she feels it is just as exciting as the first, with the bonus that she will be representing the hospital where she works.
“The Boston Marathon holds a special place in my heart. I ran in 2013 when the bombings happened and instead of running away from the chaos, I ran towards it to help,” said Barry.
This was a life-changing moment for Barry; shortly after she changed her career to focus on helping people as a nurse. She feels that as a runner she is responsible for keeping the memory of the 2013 victims that passed alive each step she takes. Kelsey’s race day strategy is to feed off the cheers, signs, and applause from the crowd.
Peter Thomson will also be donning a Mount Auburn jersey at the Boston Marathon. Thomson is driven to make this year’s marathon a success because his run is dedicated to a high school friend who passed away after battling cancer that developed over 20 years after she had defeated Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, and to his mother who is the survivor of three breast cancer malignancies. Running for Mount Auburn is also a personal cause to Thomson as his wife, Carey Thomson, is the hospital’s chief of pulmonary medicine. Mount Auburn Hospital’s Hoffman Breast Center offers comprehensive and compassionate care from their highly skilled and experienced team.
“The tough miles pass more easily when thinking about the tough battles that my friend Karen and my mom and all cancer victims battle through; if they can overcome the mental and physical challenge of cancer, I can cover 26.2 miles,” said Thomson.
To gear up for the 26.2 miles, Thomson has been training on the local New England running routes like Newton Hills and participating in a number of smaller races, so that come Marathon Monday, he will be ready to check the Boston Marathon off his bucket list.
“The Mount Auburn Hospital marathon team is back for 2017 and we can’t wait to set the pace with Herb Connolly Acura. Kelsey Barry is a nurse on our staff and Peter Thomson is husband to the hospital’s chief of pulmonary medicine, each has such loyalty to the hospital. We are so excited they are willing to lace up their sneakers and raise funds for the Hoffman Breast Center,” said Denis Bustin, vice president of development at Mount Auburn Hospital.
“Last year we had the opportunity to provide Mount Auburn with three entries. This allowed them to create their first ever Boston Marathon Team. This year we have Kelsey and Peter carrying on the tradition and raising valuable funds for the Hoffman Breast Center. I love that running 26.2 for this worthy charity can be a catalyst for change,” said Chris Connolly, president of the NEADA and general manager of Herb Connolly Acura of Framingham, “In 2016, more than 200 non-profit organizations raised $30.6 million for charity. Mount Auburn was able to bring in $15,000 with their three runners.”
For Connolly, Mount Auburn Hospital has always been near and dear to his family, and he knew that Herb Connolly Acura’s three invitational race entries had to support a worthy cause. Connolly himself participated in the 2010 Boston Marathon and understands the courage and dedication it takes to set off on the 26.2-mile journey. From his own experience, he explained that one of the most motivational ways to get through training in New England winters or tackling Heartbreak Hill, is to think of the patients at all the hospitals in his own backyard fighting to get better.
“I just thought of those patients, knew I didn’t have it half as bad and I just powered through my tough moments,” he said. Kelsey Barry and Peter Thomson live and breathe the Mount Auburn motto—“Excellence with Compassion”— it won’t be very hard for them to rise above all the training and race-day woes. They have the support of patients and Herb Connolly Acura behind them.
Throughout the year, NEADA will support the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) for this year’s Boston Marathon, B.A.A. Half Marathon, and B.A.A. 5K through advertising and community outreach, as they did in 2016. The eight dealers of New England Acura are ushering in the marathon spirit with the Set the Pace Sales Event starting March 13th. As the official automotive sponsor, the NEADA will also provide the official pace cars leading the Boston Marathon. Stop by one of their five booths during marathon weekend to experience the 2017 NSX in virtual reality or make a cheer sign for one of your runners.
About the New England Acura Dealers Association:
The New England Acura Dealers Association consists of eight dealerships throughout Massachusetts and New Hampshire: Acura of Auburn, Acura of Boston, Acura of Peabody, Herb Connolly Acura, Prime Acura, Prime Acura North, Sunnyside Acura and Shearer Acura. Please see neacuradealers.com for more information.
About the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.)
Established in 1887, the Boston Athletic Association is a non-profit organization with a mission of promoting a healthy lifestyle through sports, especially running. The B.A.A.’s Boston Marathon is the world’s oldest annual marathon, and the organization manages other local events and supports comprehensive charity, youth, and year-round running programs, including high-performance athletes and running club. Since 1986, the principal sponsor of the Boston Marathon has been John Hancock Financial. The Boston Marathon is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors, along with international marathons in Tokyo, London, Berlin, Chicago, and New York City. More than 60,000 runners participated in B.A.A. events in 2016. The 121st Boston Marathon will be held on Monday, April 17, 2017. For more information on the B.A.A., please visit www.baa.org.
About Mount Auburn Hospital
Mount Auburn Hospital is a hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts, affiliated with Harvard Medical School. It was founded in 1886 as the first hospital in Cambridge and until 1947 was known as Cambridge Hospital. Mount Auburn Hospital today is a general medical and surgical hospital with 203 beds.