The 2020 Boston Marathon veered far away from its usual format, much like everything else in 2020, with the COVID-19 pandemic. But that hasn't stopped a mother/daughter duo from Gloucester from making the best of the experience, and raising big money for charity.
Nadina Wilk and her daughter, Justine Wilk will be running the 124th Boston Marathon Virtual Experience, and they will be doing so in Gloucester. The mother and daughter tandem has teamed up with well known marathoner Becca Pizzi, a Belmont native that was the first American woman to complete the World Marathon Challenge, a series of seven marathons on seven continents in seven consecutive days.
The trio are developing a marathon race course on Cape Ann, starting and finishing in Gloucester, which they will run on Sunday, September 13.
The Wilks will also be running for Team End Alz, which is in support of the Alzheimer's Association's Massachusetts/New Hampshire chapter. They will be running in honor of Nadina's mother, Nonie.
"It's been such an emotional roller coaster watching the effects that Alzheimer's disease has had not only on our mom, but our entire family. The heartbreak goes deep," said Nadina. "I feel so incredibly helpless when I watch the children of the family trying to make sense of what is happening. A cure is needed to help alleviate future generations from the devastation of this disease."
The pair started off fundraising early in 2020, when they thought a live race would be held at its normal date on Patriot's Day in April. They set a goal of $20,000, and over the last several months they have shattered that goal, raising over $38,000 for the Alzheimer's Association, which uses funds raised to advance research and provide care and support for all affected by the disease.
Team End Alz has raised over $388,000 in 2020 and raised over $400,000 in 2019. Over the last 17 years, the program has raised over $7.5 million.
Donations are still being accepted at https://charity.gofundme.com/o/en/campaign/teamendalzboston2020/justinewilk.