Meg Edmonston will be among thousands this April to run the 122nd Boston Marathon. While her eye will be set on the finish line of the grueling 26.2-mile race, the real finish line for the Easton resident is an end to stroke.
Meg is running the marathon in memory of her father and stroke hero, Donald, who suffered a stroke in 2001 at age 64. She is running as a member of Tedy’s Team, an endurance training team led by retired New England Patriot Tedy Bruschi, who suffered a stroke in 2005. All proceeds raised by Tedy’s Team go to the American Stroke Association.
In 2001, when Meg was just 14-years old, her dad suffered a severe stroke. After experiencing a few initial symptoms, her dad went to bed and then to the hospital the next day. The stroke left Donald with speech and mobility difficulties and later led to secondary complications, including seizures and a heart attack.
“I love being a part of Tedy’s Team,” said Meg. “It’s nice to be able to talk to people who get what my family and I have gone through.”
Ten years after his stroke, Donald had a lower limb amputation that took a toll on his heart. On Thanksgiving night, 2011, he passed away at 75-years old.
Over the last ten years of his life, Meg watched her father go through a heart attack, a pace maker insertion, and rehab, which prompted her to become a physical therapist to help others, like her father, recover.
“My dad was and still is my hero,” said Meg. “As I see the finish line, I will be thinking of him cheering me on.”
During his life, Don was a standout athlete, having been inducted into both the Archbishop Williams and Stonehill College Hall of Fame for basketball and later trying out with the New York Yankees. He went on to become a beloved teacher, athletic director and basketball coach at numerous schools within Massachusetts.
Meg said she is proud to be raising money for the American Stroke Association by running the marathon as a member of Tedy’s Team and she knows that her dad would be proud of her.
On February 15, 2005, just weeks after winning his third Super Bowl and days after playing in the Pro Bowl in Hawaii, Bruschi suffered a stroke. He was 31. As he recovered, Bruschi and his wife, Heidi, dedicated themselves to raising awareness of stroke and being advocates and inspirations for stroke survivors.
Since its inception in 2005, Tedy’s Team has raised over $4.5 million for stroke research and educational programs with the support and dedication of more than 1,100 participants. In addition to raising funds, Tedy’s Team continues to raise awareness of stroke and its warning signs and symptoms.
On Monday, April 16, Meg and her teammates will be motivated by their stroke heroes when they hit the pavement for the marathon. They will celebrate the passion and inspiration of Tedy’s Team, honoring both survivors and the loved ones lost to the region’s No. 5 leading cause of death. The runners are taking a critical step toward raising awareness of stroke and its warning signs, as well as raising much needed funds for local research and educational programs.
Meg, who completed the Falmouth Road Race with Tedy’s Team in August, will also be running the Kona Half Marathon with the team in Hawaii this June. To support Meg’s fundraising efforts, visit http://honor.americanheart.org/goto/meghan.
Know the Warning Signs of Stroke:
Stroke is a medical emergency. Know the warning signs of stroke and teach them to others.
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body.
- Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding.
- Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.
- Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination.
- Sudden, severe headache with no known cause.
Call 9-1-1 immediately if you experience symptoms. Every second counts!