BOSTON — Andover selectman Daniel Koh met a girl named “Amy” on the first day of Harvard Business School.
It was a day that changed his life forever.
In a meeting with several students, each came up with a fun fact about themselves and a woman named Amy Sennett said she was training for a marathon.
“I was out of shape and certainly not an athlete,” said Koh. “But I told her I would train with her. Ten years, forty pounds and thirty-three marathons later, we’re still running together and madly in love.”
The duo got engaged at the 2015 Boston Marathon.
Koh finished in 3:21 while his wife was close behind at 3:22.
“Yesterday was a great day,” he said. “We got lucky with cloud cover for most of the race. Amy almost always beats me.”
They both ran for the Martin Richard Foundation. Martin was 8 years old and was tragically killed during the attack six years ago. Koh has been running for the foundation since 2014.
McGillivray returns after surgery
North Andover’s Dave McGillivray, who not only runs the Boston Marathon, but he “runs” the entire operation as the race director, had another banner day.
He always works the race until around 3:30 p.m. and then heads out to Hopkinton with several friends and family and runs the race, his 47th straight start and finish.
This one, though, was as meaningful as any marathon he has ever run. Six months ago he had triple bypass surgery.
McGillivray started at 4 p.m. and finished last, again, at 9:45 p.m.
“I’m good with that,” he noted. “I just wanted to finish this one more than ever before. It didn’t matter the time. It definitely was my hardest one but perhaps my most meaningful one. I’m glad I didn’t disappoint my heart surgeon after he said he would be disappointed if I couldn’t do this.”
He said, “Lesson learned. If we stay fit we can recover from surgery and get back out on the road. Anything is possible. I got a second chance. Running with 15 friends (most ever) including nine participants in last year’s World Marathon Challenge, my son, Luke, and finishing with little Jack Middlemiss, my heart warrior teammate made it all possible and very special.”
McGillivray and other runners helped raised over $100,000 for the Joseph Middlemiss Big Heart Foundation, with checks still coming in.
One and maybe done for Hunt
Andover native Donnie Hunt, 26, ran his first Boston Marathon on Monday and as expected it was memorable. The Trinity College grad (golfed there for four years) made his maiden voyage from Hopkinton to Boylston Street in Boston in 4:38:14 running for Brigham & Women’s Hospital.
“It was awesome,” said Hunt, who lives in South Boston. “It definitely was a long day. I knew it would be hard, but didn’t realize how hard. I had always wanted to run a marathon and now I have.”
Hunt said he hit “The Wall” at about the 15-mile mark in Wellesley, when the sun was out and temperatures hit 70 degrees.
“I needed sun screen and still got sunburned,” he said. “Then you take that right onto Comm. Ave. and you stare at Heartbreak Hill. That was a wild experience, really tough.”
But he had some help with many people yelling his name.
“I was told by a friend that you should put your name on your shirt. So I duct-taped it on,” said Hunt. “It really helps with people yelling your name. Honestly, that pushed me a lot when I was struggling.”
Hunt said training for the marathon was more fun than he expected, running in several 10K races and longer. In fact, he had done some research on future marathons. But that research has been put on hold.
“I’m very glad I did, being on the other side, having watched a few times before,” said Hunt. “But for now, I’ll relax and won’t commit to anything. I will continue to run shorter distances. I have a new appreciation for running.”
One thing he realized being around the city the weekend before the race and then running it is that the event is more worldly than he expected.
“There are people from the Boston area, but so many more people are from all over the world,” he said. “It was pretty cool seeing so many people from far away. You realize how important this event is to the world.”