Running a marathon can sometimes feel like a lonely experience in that it’s just you, the pavement and that next mile marker you’re striving toward.
But running in his 10th consecutive Boston Marathon on Monday, University of Virginia President Jim Ryan had company. It came in the form of, arguably, the pandemic’s biggest heroes: nurses.
Ryan, who has supported various causes over the years through his participation in the Boston Marathon, such as teachers and Madison House (the independent, nonprofit volunteer center for UVA students), elected to “run for nurses” in this year’s race.
“It was an obvious choice to dedicate my run to nurses, given their tireless dedication during this pandemic,” Ryan said prior to the race.
With sponsors recognizing a special nurse for each mile and having their names printed on the back of his shirt, Ryan helped raise more than $13,000 for UVA nursing student scholarships.
Ryan, whose sister and sister in-law are both nurses, finished the 26.2-mile race in 3 hours, 2 minutes and 27 seconds.
I hope you have a fantastic race! Thank you honoring our healthcare heroes who constantly and consistently offer love and support to those in need. I especially thank you for honoring #21, my personal hero. May you feel her strength and support running with you in mile 21!— Matt Foster (@mrfwahoo) October 11, 2021
Wow! Thanks to everyone for cheering and tweeting and donating and keeping me going today. I couldn’t have done this without all of you. Off for a post-race beer, which I definitely will not nurse. pic.twitter.com/ImF9mIIytM— Jim Ryan (@presjimryan) October 11, 2021