Over two dozen residents of Dedham were among the tens of thousands who completed this year’s Boston Marathon. Featuring competitors from around the globe in the handcycle, wheelchair and running divisions, the 26.2 mile trek took place on a dry Patriots Day with temperatures hovering around 70 for much of the morning and afternoon.
The following individuals from Dedham, listed with their finishing times, completed the 121st Boston Marathon within the hours during which the B.A.A. was keeping official records:
John Hadcock, 3:42.15
Andrew Hempstead, 4:11.48
Margot S. Hayes, 4:19.51
Brian J. Murphy Clinton, 4:21.17
Catherine E. McAvoy, 4:24.58
Campbell B. Probert, 4:27.54
Brian Williams, 4:28.57
Julia Lynch, 4:28.57
John F. Enos IV, 4:30.43
Elizabeth Vasallo, 4:30.43
Tracy Abber, 4:35.27
Kristina Parry, 4:40.20
Heather McLoughlin, 4:41.40
Kevin G. Fitzgibbon, 4:45.47
Kathryn C. Ryan, 4:47.29
Matthew J. Munchbach, 4:52.18
Tara N. Celata, 4:53.04
Rafael Martinez, 4:54.00
Emilio A. Locilento, 4:54.15
Jonathan Delaunay, 5:02.07
Thomas P. Bergeron, 5:05.46
Jennifer Sabbagh, 5:20.02
Suzzanne L. Freeze, 5:33.41
Doris Catlin, 5:44.41
Courtney Wilson, 5:50.43
Among the other finishers was Dan O’Neil, who crossed the end line on Boylston Street after the Boston Athletic Association had stopped keeping official time. He navigated the course in 6 hours 55 minutes, which was 35 minutes faster than he ran it last year.
Along with many of the Dedham participants who supported various causes through their running, O’Neil participated in the marathon this year as part of a team from the Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation, which raises money for programs for children in need.
In addition he recently authored a book, illustrated by Karine Makartichan, titled ‘Big Dan Runs the Marathon.’ It features rhyming narrative and colorful sketches of the title character in such events as the James Joyce Ramble and Falmouth Road Race.
The tale also covers events in this town as Bernie’s Run and the Turkey Trot. In addition it chronicles the encouragement and advice he received from his running coach.
In a concise, appealing way the book explains how O’Neil developed a passion for running Boston’s most prestigious race and the training involved in both putting in the miles and monitoring his diet.
The story concludes with a look back as well as a glimpse ahead:
He took the left on Boylston Street and then he was feeling fine,
he mustered up a slow jog and he crossed the finish line.
Big Dan’s body was smaller and somehow he ended up with a bigger heart,
even though the race for him was finished this was the best journey he ever got to start.
To be continued…
This week, O’Neil explained the origin of ‘Big Dan Runs the Marathon:’
“I wrote this book to inspire children and adults to want something more and that achieving something can be its own reward even if it means you are not the best at it. Those are great things to learn at any age. It took me a bunch of years and one awesome friend, Jennifer Ceolinski my trainer, to make me see that. I also think it’s very relatable to adults as well as children.”
O’Neil said the book costs $20 and is available at lulu.com. He added, “I am working on the book possibly being sold in local book shops soon.”
Pictured here is Dedham resident Dan O’Neil in downtown Boston shortly after crossing the finish line of this year’s Boston Marathon.
Photo contributed to The Dedham Times