On April 15, 2013, while I was a Sophomore at BU, I stood at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. One of my best friends, Corey Leonardi, was running with a team of his peers from Boston College – and I wanted to be there to see him achieve this amazing milestone in his life. The day was supposed to be one of joy and celebration - instead, it took a dark and sudden turn when 2 bombs went off. One bomb detonated about 100 feet to my left, and the other followed a couple hundred feet to my right.
Luckily, neither my friends nor I were injured – including Corey, who had just made the final turn onto Boylston Street when the bombs exploded. Immediately after this tragedy, I remember the countless stories of the losses suffered by those who were closest to the blasts, and the courage displayed by the heroes who ran towards the scene. These brave people were running to directly help those in need or indirectly hurrying to the hospitals to give blood. One of these stories hit close to home - the story of Lu Lingzi. We shared a similar history: both BU students at the finish line that day, both immigrants from China who were able to pursue a life with better opportunities in America. It struck me that in such a brief moment of terror, her life was tragically cut short while I was lucky to escape with mine.
5 years later, in 2018 – I decided to run the Boston Marathon for Lu Lingzi and the foundation created in her honor. From this remarkable experience, I came to understand that there is so much more to this race than the 26.2 miles from Hopkinton to Boylston St. Last year alone, $38.7 million was raised for 297 non-profit organizations by runners of so many different backgrounds who chose to unite as one, dedicating months out of their lives to both train and fundraise. The Lingzi Foundation raised a little over $135K -- with some of these funds going towards grants to support the Boston PAL organization, the Wendy Martinez Legacy Project, and the One World Strong foundation.
I’m honored to be selected again this year to support the Lingzi Foundation, and to once again celebrate the perseverance and hardworking spirit that Lingzi embodied during her life by running the marathon again in her honor.
Thank you for your support!
The Lingzi Foundation honors the example set by Lingzi Lu, who spread love and compassion while fearlessly following her dreams, by providing educational opportunities for courageous and ambitious students like her, and supporting organizations that reflect her passions and recognize those making a positive impact in building bridges between cultures and communities. Learn more at http://lingzifoundation.org