April Cure Champions

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This month we are excited to feature our Boston Marathon Team as our April Cure Champions. This driven group of runners will be racing 26.2 miles from Hopkinton to Boston on Monday, April 15. Learn more about some of our Team JDRF members below and check out the rest at givengain.com/campaign/jdrfgreaternewengland!

 

Casey Egan | Whitman, MA 
Physical therapist 

What is your connection to JDRF and T1D?
I’m running in honor of my cousin JP who passed due to complications of type 1 diabetes and for his sister who also lives with T1D. I’m running for a cure in our lifetime and to make a positive change for those who live with type 1!  

Is this your first marathon? 
Yes 

Longest (or favorite) training run/route:
Running from my house in Southie out to Wellesley college!  

What are you most looking forward to at the Boston Marathon?
All the fans and support on the course and seeing my family and friends out there on race day.  

What are you most nervous about?
The hills! 

What is your favorite fuel (before, during, and after the race)?
Pasta and pizza have been my go-to pre long run food! 

Do you run with music?
Yes, but it has to be a wide variety on these longer runs! 

Kristin Gaul | Weston, MA
New England Wire Products CFO 

What is your connection to JDRF and T1D?
At age 11 my brother Brendan Peters was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, and I am honored to run in support of him. I am so proud of Brendan. He faced his diagnosis with ease, and I have never once heard him complain, but it is not an easy thing to manage. The tools available to him have changed so much just over the last 10 years since he was diagnosed, and I am hopeful that with the work JDRF does we can FIND A CURE for Brendan and the millions of others affected! 

Is this your first marathon? 
This will by my 8th marathon and my second Boston Marathon! 

Longest (or favorite) training run/route:
My favorite training run has been practicing the Boston course!! It has been so much fun to get some training runs in with other Boston runners. There is so much camaraderie and support each weekend.  

Do you have any race day traditions or superstitions? 
I preventatively put blister Band-Aids all over my feet and I always prepare a special playlist the night before!   

What are you most looking forward to at the Boston Marathon?
The Boston Marathon is such a special race. It is so challenging to train for due to the time of year and you never know what weather you are going to get, but it is all worth it on race day! I am so excited to be running with JDRF and cannot wait for April 15th!!  

What are you most nervous about?
I am most nervous about the weather! It is the only thing you really can’t control but also what makes Boston such an exciting race 🙂  

What is your favorite fuel (before, during, and after the race)?
Morning of I will have oatmeal with peanut butter, jelly and half a banana. Waiting at the start I will have a bar and a banana. I plan on drinking a lot of water and Nuun leading up to the race. During the race I will switch between Maurten gels and Clif blocks with caffeine and water/Gatorade every mile. After, I will enjoy a nice meal with my family!  

Do you run with music?
During training runs I switch between podcasts, e-books, and music! On race day I will try to enjoy the crowds and save the music for when I need some extra motivation/distraction!  

Is there anything else you would like to share?
It has been so much fun and an honor to train and run with JDRF!!!  

Meghan White | Foxborough, MA
Kindergarten Teacher

What is your connection to JDRF and T1D?
My daughter, Elizabeth (age 6) was diagnosed with T1D in March 2023, and I am running the Boston Marathon in her honor. She has been a strong, brave and resilient T1D warrior from day one. JDRF was there to support us from the early days of diagnosis when we were digging deep for strength. When we arrived home from the hospital, JDRF sent us a Bag of Hope and Rufus quickly become Elizabeth’s best friend. JDRF has been a community of support for us when we needed it most. We have attended the One Walk, TypeOneNation Summit, JDRF family outings, JDRF Gala and Virtual Chats from Home. We have made so many friends in the T1D community thanks to JDRF. We admire the mission behind the foundation and know they won’t stop working until there is a cure. My finish line is a world without Type 1 Diabetes.

Is this your first marathon?
Boston 2024 will be my first marathon. I have never run a marathon before, and I am very excited for this upcoming challenge. “When your legs get tired, you run with your heart” and I have a lot of heart to run on with my daughter, Elizabeth.

Longest (or favorite) training run/route:
My favorite training run was in March with Team JDRF running from Hopkinton to Heartbreak Hill. It was such an inspiring 20-mile run!

Do you have any race day traditions or superstitions?
Before my long runs, I always ask Elizabeth for advice. She usually says, “think of me when it gets hard, mom!”

What are you most looking forward to at the Boston Marathon?
I am most looking forward to being at Athlete’s Village at the starting line in Hopkinton. I grew up watching the Boston Marathon at my grandparents’ home in Ashland at the end of Woodland Road. We hosted runners each year and had our race day tradition of waking up early and cutting up orange slices. My family assured me they will continue the tradition and have the orange slices ready me!

What are you most nervous about?
I had a race day “dream” that I overslept on 4/15 and missed the start.

What is your favorite fuel (before, during, and after the race)?
Maurten hydrogels are my favorite fuel.

Do you run with music?
No music on race day—I want to hear the crowd cheering every step of the race!

Is there anything else you would like to share?
This past year, I have learned that T1D brings on a rollercoaster of challenges each and every day. I have also learned that those with T1D are stronger and more resilient because of it. I could not be prouder of my daughter, Elizabeth and all the ups and downs she has navigated with her T1D. She has endured so many challenges and continues to persevere with a smile on her face. T1D has not stopped or slowed her down. On race day, I will think of her with every passing mile. I will not slow down when it gets hard, because I know she will be at the finish waiting for me with open arms.

Bonnie Wileman | From Louisville, KY, living in Charlotte, NC
Financial Analyst 

What is your connection to JDRF and T1D?
My dad and older brother both have T1D, and JDRF was a great support system for my family after my brother’s diagnosis. 

Is this your first marathon? 
I’ve done lots of half marathons, but this will be my first full one! 

Longest (or favorite) training run/route:
My longest run was 20 miles – I was home in KY for the weekend and my mom biked alongside me the whole way. 

What are you most looking forward to at the Boston Marathon?
Meeting the JDRF team, getting lots of Boston Marathon merch and crossing that finish line! 

What are you most nervous about?
The last 10k since my training plan only gets me to 20 miles and the hills. 

What is your favorite fuel (before, during, and after the race)?
I love dark chocolate covered almonds during a long run. 

Do you run with music?
I usually listen to a podcast or audiobook when I run.