Health and Wellness, Sports Highlights

Medford Residents to Run Marathon to Help Kids Suffering from Cancer

Megan KuhnleThree Medford residents will run in the 121st Boston Marathon on April 17st in support of MassGeneral Hospital for Children’s pediatric cancer team, Fighting Kids’ Cancer … One Step at a Time.

Megan Kuhle, a Tufts University student study community health, has seen the impact MGH has made on the local community through the Tufts curriculum and hopes to further those endeavors through her fundraising.

Meg O’Donnell, a NBC Boston news writer, mirrors Kuhle’s sentiments in funding research and quality of life activities – art and music therapy and child life programming – for pediatric patients undergoing treatment.

Margaret O'DonnellMGH pediatric resident Michael Piccioli has firsthand experience caring for children and their families in the hospital setting. Last year, Piccioli developed a special bond with a pediatric cancer patient, who unfortunately died. Picciolo will run in the team’s memory.

They will join an estimated 30,000 runners along the 26.2 mile course that spans from Hopkinton to Boylston Street in Boston. Funds raised by the Medford residents will support cutting-edge research and quality of life programming – such as child life services and art and music therapy – which help pediatric cancer patients and their families cope emotionally and developmentally with their illnesses.

MIchael PiccioliThe team, made up of 102 runners – including former patients and parents, MGH employees and hospital supporters – has set a fundraising goal of $1 million.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of John Hancock’s partnership with the Mass General Marathon Program. Since it was formed in 1998, Mass General’s Fighting Kids’ Cancer…One Step at a Time has raised more than $12 million that directly support the pediatric hematology-oncology program.

“I have a unique perspective into the lives of children undergoing live saving therapy at MGHfC,” says Howard Weinstein, MD, chief of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology at MGHfC and 17-year captain of the pediatric team. “Since the team’s inception, I’ve seen our runners get physically and emotionally involved in our mission to conquer childhood cancer. They go the extra mile and their support is vital to our continued holistic approach to cancer care.’

To learn more about the Fighting Kids’ Cancer…One Step at a Time team or help support a runner from Medford, visit https://www.crowdrise.com/MGHPediatricCancerBoston2017.

– Submitted by Massachusetts General Hospital

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