By: Stephanie King
For any avid competitive runner, the opportunity to receive an invitation to participate in the Boston Marathon is a dream come true and an accomplishment well-earned. On April 21, 2014, Hilbert College alum and Hamburg, N.Y. native, Tom Doody ’97, will be able to live out that dream.
Competing in marathons isn’t anything new for Doody. He’s raced in the Dublin, Ireland marathon twice, the NYC Marathon, the Rock & Roll Marathons in San Diego, Calif., and in Arizona along with a full Ironman, a half Ironman, and many smaller triathlons. He also returns to Buffalo, N.Y. every year to participate in the Ride for Roswell.
For Doody, a Business Management graduate and 2013 recipient of the Dominique Thompson Hilbert Alumnus of the Year award, the chance to run in this marathon, however, will hold an even greater value to him given the tragic events that occurred during last year’s race. He will also be competing in honor of raising funds for three organizations that hold a special place in his heart: The Pat Tillman Foundation, Roswell Park Cancer Research Center and the Boston One Fund.
What does he hope to accomplish by participating in this marathon? “To finish for one,” he jokingly said. “But it’s really an interesting opportunity after everything that happened last year. It’s a way to kind of honor the people who were injured last year. It’s a way for me to use this exposure, use this experience, to give back to some other organizations that are very worthy.”
Doody tries to demonstrate the Franciscan values of hope, peace, service, joy, integrity, respect, compassion and vision as well as encompass the true spirit of Hilbert College in his everyday way of life. He says he owes a lot of who he is now to Hilbert and the people he met here along the way.
“Professors Pat Heraty and Dan Roland, specifically, were extremely instrumental in me opening up and finding assets within myself that I didn’t know were there previously,” he said. “They really kind of encouraged me and pushed me to get involved and to take leadership aspects. I was really active on campus and really started to spread my wings.”
“When I moved out to Arizona I didn’t really know a whole lot of people out here so that ‘getting involved’, that ‘joining organization’ stuff… I just kind of built upon that and started networking out here and that kind of led to everything else.”
Doody hopes to finish the marathon in four hours or less and celebrate his 40th birthday in the most epic way possible. During his time in Boston, he plans to visit both the bombing site on Boylston Street and the elementary school in Newton, MA to pay tribute at the respective memorials.
“It’s going to be a great experience,” he said. “It’s going to be an extremely emotional experience, too, race morning. I’m sure it’s just going to be crazy there.”
Doody resides in Scottsdale, Arizona with his wife and two daughters. For more information or to support Doody's efforts please email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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