Why I’m Running: Matthew Stephansky is running Boston for the Charlestown Lacrosse and Learning Center

"It has been a goal of mine to run the Boston Marathon for a cause that I believe in and fortunately the Charlestown Lacrosse and Learning Center has provided me with the opportunity to do that."

In our “Why I’m Running” series, Boston Marathon runners share what’s inspiring them to make the 26.2-mile trek from Hopkinton to Boston on April 16, 2018. Editor’s note: Due to the number of submissions already received, we are no longer accepting entries for this year’s race.

Name: Matthew Stephansky
Age: 38
From: Hingham
Bib #: 28469

It has been a goal of mine to run the Boston Marathon for a cause that I believe in and fortunately the Charlestown Lacrosse and Learning Center has provided me with the opportunity to do that.

By servicing over 300 youth through both the lacrosse programs and learning center, the program’s mission to expand and develop educational programs for youth through community outreach and athletics is a foundation that I always relied on growing up and I also understand how important it is to invest in one’s own community. In particular, the educational confidence, leadership skills, and appreciation for diversity that the program strives to instill in Charlestown youth certainly gives the kids a broader sense of themselves and a better opportunity to live more happy and successful lives.

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Those close to me know that I’ve spent the better part of my adult life going to school and living in all different neighborhoods in the Boston metro area (JP, Dorchester, Mission Hill, Brighton, Allston, Watertown, South Boston, and Beacon Hill), so I know how much this day means to our city.

From my first real experience watching the 2003 marathon leaders on TV and running down three flights of stairs to cheer them on as they rounded the corner on Hereford Street, to the couple of 11:05 a.m. first pitches I’ve been lucky enough to have tickets for at Fenway, to living in a studio on Beacon Hill only about a dozen blocks away from the finish line and watching at a friend’s in Allston in pure horror as our spirit was selfishly ripped away from us that spring afternoon in 2013.

These are the reasons why I run this race on April 16, 2018.

Check out our entire “Why I’m Running” series.

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Editor’s note: Entries may have been lightly edited for clarity or grammar.