The 2015 Boston Marathon may be five months away, but the Martin W. Richard Charitable Foundation on Monday announced Monday a list of people who will run in April in memory of the 8-year-old boy from Dorchester who was killed in the blasts at the finish line in 2013.
The foundation is still looking for runners who have already qualified to run in 2015, after accepting dozens of charity runners from hundreds of applications. Charity runners do not have to meet the normal qualifying time requirements.
“There are so many people out there who feel a connection with Martin through his message of ‘no more hurting people’ and believe in the mission of his Foundation,” said Denise Richard, Martin’s mother, in a statement released by the foundation. “It is heartening to hear from so many young people who give personal testament of how education, athletics, and community have shaped their lives, and who are willing to help us ensure that for the next generation.”
The 2014 race raised $1.25 million, which will be invested in projects to be announced in early 2015, the foundation said. Some of the money was distributed in 2014 to programs dedicated to getting children with disabilities more involved in athletics.
The 2015 team, named MR8 after Martin’s initials and jersey number, consists so far of 59 men and women ages 18 and 59, the foundation said, nearly all of whom are charity runners.
Forty-seven are from Massachusetts, with 15 coming from the Richards’s Dorchester neighborhood and another 12 from other sections of Boston. The runners not from Massachusetts hail from 11 different states.
Team MR8 has 50 numbers to give to runners who would not make qualifying times to run the Marathon. Additional team members who have already qualified to run are asked to join to help the team raise money for the foundation. “What Team MR8 accomplished in Martin’s name in 2014 was incredible, and got us off to a strong start,” said Martin’s father, Bill Richard. “With today’s announcement, we are welcoming new runners to the team and expanding our corps of ambassadors even further.”
Pat Doherty of Dorchester ran for team MR8 in 2014 and plans to run with the foundation again in 2015 — his 19th Boston Marathon.
“Running in Martin’s honor gave me new levels of energy, stamina, and purpose,” Doherty said in a statement about his 2014 race.
More information about the foundation is available at TeamMR8.org.Kiera Blessing can be reached at email@example.com.