We are so proud of our team of Boston Marathon runners, each of whom has a unique story full of personal connections to TCR and strong motivations for running. We hope you took some time to read about the other three members of this year’s marathon team: Kerri Conneely, John Fleming, and Deana Hickey.

Meanwhile, we are proud to introduce you to the rest of our team: Lauren Ruffing, John Shea, and Cat Steckbeck.

LaurenLauren Ruffing

We’re thrilled to have Lauren Ruffing on our marathon team once again this year. Lauren, a resident of North Attleboro, is running her second Boston Marathon on behalf of TCR. We are deeply grateful to her for taking on this commitment of time and energy on our behalf for a second time.

Lauren’s relationship with TCR began in 2014, when her brother Rich joined the TCR marathon team to run in memory of their mother, Tricia. Lauren ran the marathon for us the following year, and she is once again running in memory of her mother. “I’m running my second Boston Marathon to thank her,” Lauren said. “On any run I want to quit, I remind myself that she never gave up, not once, and she did that for me and for her family.”

John SheaJohn Shea

John Shea, a resident of Needham, is running his first Boston Marathon to support TCR, but he is no stranger to this challenge—the 2016 Boston Marathon represents John’s thirteenth marathon overall! In addition to running the Boston Marathon six times, he’s also run the Chicago Marathon twice, the New York Marathon three times, and the Marine Corps Marathon once. His running experience and his passion are assets to our team.

John’s relationship with TCR began in 2013, when he and his two daughters began attending TCR’s peer support groups after the death of his wife, Diane. “The Children’s Room has helped us to support each other as a family, to find ways for us to honor Diane and keep her memory alive,” he said. “The Children’s Room has also given the girls and me the opportunity to connect with and make friends with other families like our own.”

Cat SteckbeckCat Steckbeck

Cat Steckbeck, a college student, is a resident of Natick, Massachusetts. Completing a marathon has been a longtime goal for Cat, and we’re honored that she has chosen to pursue that goal on our behalf.

Cat’s relationship with TCR began in 2007, when she and her family began attending TCR’s peer support groups after the death of her mother, Virginia. “I know my mom would have been my biggest supporter with signs and boisterous cheering. Running the Marathon in her name is significantly meaningful to me,” said Cat. “But most importantly, I am running this marathon for The Children’s Room: to raise money and awareness for something so close to my own heart, to keep this nonprofit organization alive and able to expand to help others the way it helped me nine years ago.”

About The Team

Each year our marathon team plays a crucial role in raising much-needed funds to support TCR’s programs and services for grieving children, teens, and families. As they have for the past six years, this year’s six bibs, or Boston Marathon numbers, were provided by the John Hancock Marathon Nonprofit Program. Over the past six years our marathon team has raised over $433,800 for The Children’s Room. Runners receive ongoing support from The Children’s Room in reaching their fundraising goals, and during their training, this year’s team will be coached by Crissy Straub and Malinda Dublin of MC Coaching.

We invite you to visit our team’s Crowdrise page to read more and to support all of our runners!