On Monday, April 15th, four courageous Achilles Athletes with Disabilities will toe the line in Hopkinton as they attempt to conquer the running of the 123rd Boston Marathon! Your help is needed to help cover the costs of expenses for these inspiring athletes. Learn more about their stories below:
Mauricio was caring for his elderly mother a few years ago and took a terrible spill that sent him into a coma. He awoke with a Traumatic Brain Injury and had to re-learn a lot of day to day functions. He found his way to Achilles and has discovered that running is a wonderful outlet that has helped him to mainstream back into society and given him a whole new platform and focus in life. He has a tremendous wit and is an absolute joy to be around. When he's not running he's often spending his time advocating for those who have suffered Traumatic Brain Injuries and was honored by the Brain Injury Association of NY with the prestigious Leadership award last year. As a runner, he qualified for the Boston Marathon and ran the race in 2018 under horrific conditions. He requalified for Boston and will be back to write a new script in 2019. At the 2018 NYC Marathon he set out to run a 3:45 (as a 60+ year old) and he hit the nail on the head!! Mauricio was awarded as the 2018 NYRR Achilles Male Runner of the Year at the recent Club Awards Night.
Alison is a visually impaired runner and had very few chances to compete in adpative sports as a child. She loved to run and when she joined Achilles, a whole new set of opportunities opened up for her. Alison has run the the TCS New York City Marathon (twice), qualified for Boston (which she ran and finished under the worst possible conditions!) CIM and the Lake Placid Half IronMan. As an attorney and athlete, Alison helps to changes our outlook on individuals living with disabilities. She is the 2018 NYRR Achilles Female Athlete of the Year
"Backwards" Bill Reilly
Bill Reilly, 65, hails from Queens, New York, where he lives with his loving wife and biggest fan, Doris. An accountant for the Cerebral Palsy Associations of New York State, Reilly has a penchant for beer and standup-worthy jokes. He also has cerebral palsy, which has not stopped him from completing more than 40 marathons, including both the Boston and NYC Marathons. Bill completes races with several guides, who walk or jog alongside him and help steer his wheelchair. Affectionately known as "Backwards Bill", Bill pushes himself backwards in his wheelchair without any assistance. He has completed the marathon distance in as little as under 6 hours. Bill has inspired many guides throughout the years as well as countless runners, and has no intention of stopping anytime soon.
Matt is a blind runner and all around goofball. When he's not running, he works as a camp counselor. Most marathon runners start to decline in their 30s or 40s. With the help of his guides and pacers, Matt (now in his 50s), exceeded all expectations in 2017 when he crossed the finish line at the NYC Marathon in a blazing fast new career best of 3 hours, 18 minutes! He followed it up with an impressive 3:23 in 2018. He is a great example of how you can have a great second act in life -- even with a disability.