My name is Colin McShane and for years I have been wanting to run the Boston Marathon. I grew up in the town of Winchester, Massachusetts where I lived for seventeen years. During my adolescence I was never much involved with exercise for reasons I will explain below, and my top weight pushed 325lbs. I never addressed my own health issues and rather focused much of my time on my mother who was very sick and was by herself with noone to rely on. My Mum, Robyn McShane, was at bedrest most of my childhood. She had many difficulties moving around, breathing, and taking care of herself. Often as a young teenager I had to be her caregiver; go grocery shopping, pick up her medication, help her with various chores around the house... It was both mentally and draining physically draining and I simply did not focus enough on myself. In my junior year of high school I came home from school and she was unresponsive. My brother Lou Tourtellot called an ambulance and we rushed to the hospital where she was later pronounced dead from cardiac arrest.
This point of my life became a major wake up call. I began to focus on myself and learn what it means to be independent. My sister Jennifer Tourtellot took me in at her house in Malden and drove me to school every morning while I finished my senior year at Winchester High School. I suddenly found myself in a position where I no longer had this significant commitment in my every day life. During this time of reflection, I began reassessing my own health, the quality of life I had and where I wanted it to be. I gradually began working out and after gaining some confidence in my abilities, I joined the Swimming and Track & Field teams where I discovered my love for running. It wasn't immediate, but that runners high is real!
After High School, I continued to pursue my love for running and and was accepted into the Criminal Justice program at Fitchburg State University. Throughout college I learned to overcome many things on my own, especially without having parents or support system aside from my siblings. I ran Cross Country, Indoor Track & Field, and Outdoor Track & Field all four years of college and became involved with a variety of clubs including Student Government, Criminal Justice Club, and being an Orientation Leader. I graduated in May of 2019 with my Bachelors in Criminal Justice. Whether it be my fratenity Sigma Pi, family, or friends, I am so grateful to have an amazing group of people supporting my future goals, the biggest being able to run in the Boston Marathon.
I'm currently working as a Full Time Supervisor Security Officer and in the process of obtaining my dispatching certifications to join a police department and ultimately becoming a police officer (I passed the civil service exam earlier this year!). I have always been a people-orientated person and have a passion for helping others. I know what it is like to deal with stress and hard situations, I lived through my own, and I want to be someone who can help others.
I live with my girlfriend Elizabeth Garside in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. I currently still workout six days a week after college, running at least two road races a month, and a half marathon once a month. My current goals are trying to run the Boston Marathon in under 3 hours and proving anything is possible from once weighing 325lbs to now weighing 150lbs. Running isn't everything but it holds a spot in my heart that has helped me overcome many things in life and focus on what is important.
I chose to run for Massachusetts Eye and Ear for a couple of reasons. First, your vision is something that can so easily be taken for granted. Mass Eye and Ear clinicians and scientists are driven by a mission to find cures for blindness, deafness and diseases of the head and neck. Each year, 300,000 people—adults and children—from 80 countries seek care at Mass. Eye and Ear and 20,000 of them undergo life-changing surgery.
Second, my sister, Jennifer Tourtellot, has been working in the Ophthalmology field for almost ten years and committed her career to the research and development of treatments in ophthalmic disease.
Team Eye and Ear is Mass. Eye and Ear's marathon team, with the goal to raise funds and hope for those suffering with debilitating conditions affecting sight, hearing, voice, balance, taste and smell as well as cancers of the eye, head and neck. I love everything about this organization and I want to represent them when I step foot on the road of 26.2 miles in Boston.
Mass. Eye and Ear is home to the world's largest vision and hearing research centers, offering hope and healing to patients everywhere through discovery and innovation. As a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital, Mass. Eye and Ear trains future medical leaders in ophthalmology and otolaryngology through our highly competitive residency and fellowship programs. MEEI is ranked a Top Hospital by U.S. News & World Report and a member of Partners HealthCare.
Learn more at MassEyeAndEar.org
I dedicate running the Boston Marathon for my mother Robyn Ann McShane who passed away on February 26, 2014. Jennifer Tourtellot and Lou Tourtellot who have basically raised me as a little brother but also have been a father and mother figure. My girlfriend Elizabeth Garside who has given me support every step of the way and lastly all of my friends and mentors at Winchester High and Fitchburg State University.
Your donations and support will not go unnoticed and I promise to keep you all informed with a monthly blog and email updates.
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