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Icon Dave McGillivray celebrates 40th anniversary of historic Run Across America for cancer at Fenway

Dave McGillivray ran to home plate at Fenway Park in celebration of the 40th anniversary of McGillivray's cross-country run.
Dave McGillivray ran to home plate at Fenway Park in celebration of the 40th anniversary of McGillivray's cross-country run.(Barry Chin/Globe Staff)

“I’m going to run until I’m out of time,” said 64-year-old Boston Marathon race director Dave McGillivray, a longtime philanthropist, endurance athlete, and motivational speaker.

McGillivray celebrated the 40th anniversary of his historic 1978 Run Across America — covering 3,452 miles in 80 days — from Medford, Ore., to Medford, Mass., by doing exactly what he did when he was in his 20s.

He ran into Fenway Park on Thursday before a cheering crowd, past the Green Monster, and made it back to home plate, all after running 7 miles from his hometown, Medford, and all for one reason: to benefit the Jimmy Fund.

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As he did in 1978, McGillivray is raising money for the fund, which supports patients from Boston’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

McGillivray wants to help cancer care and research to improve chances of survi- val for patients across the country.

McGillivray’s goal is to raise $100,000 — again — for the Jimmy Fund by Sept. 23, which marks the 30th anniversary of the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk that he helped create.

His 12-year-old son, his longtime friend Josh Nemzer, and four-time Boston Marathon winner Bill Rodgers ran alongside McGillivray as part of the pregame ceremony on Thursday.

“It’s a connection to the past, and the fact that 40 years ago, I wasn’t even sure if I’d be breathing 40 years from then,” McGillivray said after being escorted by state and Medford police.

“And now to think that I’m still at it, still running, and feeling really good.”

So far, he has run 46 Boston Marathons in a row, and he said he will continue as long as his legs can carry him.

The whole idea is to use his health to help those who are less fortunate, said McGillivray, who had a granite stone placed in front of Medford City Hall on Thursday
in honor of the work he has done.

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Engraved on the stone was his quote, “Those who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.”

McGillivray said he felt touched and blessed to be able to celebrate 40 years.

“It feels good that I’m able to celebrate with the people who were there back then, and to do it for the Jimmy Fund again,” McGillivray said.


Katie Camero can be reached at katie.camero@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @camerokt_