By Ed Karvoski Jr., Contributing Writer
Hudson – Stormtroopers roamed the grounds around the Hudson-Concord Elks #959 Pavilion when the third annual Millennium 5K was held May 22.
In its first two years, the “Star Wars” themed fundraiser helped John and Sheryl Marrazzo make their Hudson home become wheelchair accessible including an elevator for their son Jake, 13, a seventh-grader at David J. Quinn Middle School. He lives with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a genetic disorder characterized by progressive muscle degeneration and weakness. Now, they want the 4 Jake’s Sake Foundation to help other families get mobility equipment such as wheelchair lifts.
Activities began with speakers representing the Sisu Project, a New England running club. They named Jake an honorary club member, noting that he embodies the club’s philosophy of positivity in the face of adversity. Its club member Mike Griffin of Sturbridge finished the 5K first overall in 17:22. First-place female was Lauren Lesniak of Hudson in 19:53. About 230 runners and walkers participated.
A Kids Fun Run was organized by Brian Quinn, physical education teacher at C.A. Farley Elementary School, and Nancy Hudson, adaptive physical education teacher for Hudson public schools. Each of about three dozen children received a commemorative medal.
Following the 5K run/walk, refreshments, raffles and children’s activities were available at the pavilion. There, guests became more aware of the benefiting charity with signs posted on the grounds. One poster stated, “There is no cure for Duchenne, but there is always hope.”
For more information and to donate online to the 4 Jake’s Sake Foundation, visit 4jakessake.com and on Facebook. Checks can be made payable to “4 Jake’s Sake” and postal mailed to Avidia Bank, 42 Main St., Hudson, MA 01749.
Photos/Ed Karvoski Jr.