On The Waterfront: Thousands Converge at Run to Remember
by Bob Fitzgerald
BOSTON-MEMORIAL DAY – The Boston Run to Remember Half Marathon/5M is a big deal! So big that at the 3-day Expo at the World Trade Center there were no less than seven (7) bouncy houses for the kids. So big in fact that NER rolled out of bed when the birds first started tweeting to make the 7:00 am start.
Small sacrifice tongue in cheek aside, as this 14th mega-event honors first responders and law enforcement who’ve died in the line of duty. There was a special pre-race ceremony this year for Yarmouth K9 Officer Sean Gannon, who recently lost his life in the line of duty.
Adding to the masses gathered in Seaport Boulevard by the World Trade Center were 312 Law Enforcement runners participating in the 5M and another 206 in the 5-miler with 27 first responder teams (teams of 5 running in the 13.1-miler). The whole she-bang benefits community and kids programs of the Boston Police Runner’s Club.
While some felt a chill the day was great for racing with overcast conditions in the mid-50s (and OK, a pesky wind).
There were three waves heading to the Boston skyline, the first with the faster 5M and Half runners.
Interestingly, Marshfield Road Runner John Noland (himself an Air Force man) and a speedster in his own right, leads the men’s field at the B.A.A. Half Marathon on his racing bike and was doing the same here—a quartet fronting an eventual 4,344 finishers that included his 24 year-old son Derek. Glory would have to wait for Derek ’tho he did achieve the podium with a 3rd place run of 1:14:46.
Before the half marathoners completed their tour of the Back Bay to cross the Mass Ave. Bridge, passing MIT and Harvard before wending back, the 5-Milers arrived at the Seaport.
Somerville Road Runner Patrick Haneburg, 24—who ran 2:37:49 at this year’s waterlogged Boston Marathon—broke the tape in 27:43 for a 10-second victory over Maryland’s Eric Shuler. (Photo: 5M Winner Patrick Haneburg, photo by FitzFoto/NERunner)
In the women’s tilt, the Greater Boston TC’s Lyndsay Eysenbach, 25, won by a ton as the former Princeton ace logged in at 30:44.
In the main event, somewhat unheralded Missourian Greg Hutson, 32, broke it open to win in 1:11:26. We say “somewhat unheralded” as Hutson didn’t start running until age 28. In his third year of running he placed 4th in the St. Louis Marathon in 2:38:58.
“I’ve just been running 40-45 miles a week so this was a bit surprising,” said the St. Louis resident. “The weather certainly helped, for the past week it’s been 80˚ to 90˚ every day in St. Louis.”
Visiting a younger brother in Scituate, Hutson was waiting for his fiancée, dad and brother to finish the half. His mother and sister had already completed the 5-Miler.
“There were a few of us running together but I was feeling great so I took off. This was a really cool course running through Boston and they did a great job in organizing everything.”
The women’s winner also hadn’t been training “too, too hard” and “had no idea know what to expect” but considering she finished 4+ minutes ahead of her competition with a time of 1:18:56 that would have broken the women’s record (if not for Hilary Dionne running 1:17:09 here last year) there might be some pedigree on display here.
Right and right again. Ohio native Emily Stites, 23, was a 5-time All American runner at William & Mary with bests of 15:43 at 5,000m and 34:15 at 10,000m. Stites has resided in Somerville for the past two years. (Photo: Women’s Half Marathon winner Emily Stites, photo by MickFoto/NERunner)
“I had no idea what I’d run, hopefully 1:18 or 1:19,” commented Stites. “It was windy out there but what a beautiful course and running through Boston was just amazing.”
“Everything is just done well here,” noted Detective Lieutenant Billy Coulter, who’s worked all 14 events. “Steve (RD Steve Balfour) just does a great job year after year and it makes for a quality event.”
While working detail here, Coulter has run 35 straight Boston Marathons and has a free lifetime pass (given recently) at the Walt Disney Marathon. Why? Sorry, gotta wrap up, we’ll save that and much more (for the print edition of NER).
Full Results HERE