Western Mass. father runs for Boston marathon victim

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP)– Tuesday, April 15th, people around our state and across the country are remembering the tragic events at the Boston Marathon finish line one year ago.

As many reflect back on the bombings that killed three people and injured more than 260, many people are looking ahead to this year’s race.  22News spoke to one father from Western Massachusetts was inspired to make this year’s race his first marathon.

James Przypek, from Ware, has worked at the Basket Ball Hall of Fame in Springfield for years.  He told 22News running a marathon was a bucket list item, until one year ago, when he, like the rest of the nation, watched the events of last year’s Boston marathon bombing unfold.

In his search for a charity team to run on, Przypek came across the Richard’s Family.

Four of the five members of the Richard’s family were physically wounded by the second bomb that went off near the marathon’s finish line on Boylston St.  The Richard’s son, Martin, just eight years old, became the youngest victim of those bombs to loose his life that day.

Przypek said that with two kids similar in age to the Richard family’s three children, he knew this was who he had to run for.

“I can think back to April 15th last year and how I felt being a father and a husband and what they went through and just kind of an unspoken connection like everybody else,” Przypek said.

Przypek is the only Western Massachusetts runner to be hand selected by the Richards family to represent Team MR8.  100 runners were chosen for that team out of more than 300 applications.

Team MR8 stands for Martin Richard, 8 years old.  Martin also liked to wear the number 8 on all his sports team jerseys.  The team is raising money for the newly established Martin Richard Charitable Foundation.

The foundation will apply the money raised to things that support its three part mission of education, athletics, and community.

To donate to James Przypek or the Martin Richard Charitable Foundation you can go to, teammr8.org

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