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Michael Freeman and his wife are running in memory of their son

"We are hoping to find strength in crossing Boylston street in his honor."

Michael and Tracy Freeman will run to raise money for Rett Syndrome Association of Massachusetts. The couple lost their son to the disease in March.

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. If you’re running the marathon, you can share your #WhyImRunningBoston story here.

Name: Michael Freeman
Age: 48
From: Stoughton

This year my wife, Tracy, and I will both be running our third Boston Marathon with a broken heavy heart. Our run will be slow, and with purpose. We lost our beautiful boy Aidan on March 7, 2021. He left this earthly world after a courageous lifelong battle with Rett Syndrome. He fought his entire life against a body that confined him on earth. A body that forced him to live on a feeding tube, have a trache, sleep on a vent, have a pacemaker installed, and countless other surgeries.

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He was non-verbal and non-ambulatory. He spent hundreds of nights in the hospital and throughout it all he was the strength of our family. He was the light and joy. He lost his battle at 7 years 10 months and as he did everything, he did it courageously, with a smile on his face, and a light that still burns in our hearts. We will be joining Team Rett as members to try to find our way in life again. Life is debilitating without our Aidan. It is panic, grief, overwhelming loss, and we wish this pain on no other family.

Aidan’s uncle will be running for the Rett Syndrome Association of Massachusetts, Rett Angels, and we are hoping to raise money on his page.

Our Aidan is missed by everyone. His family, including his brother and sister, and the community he touched for his entire life. He was a force in this world and we hope and pray we will find the strength to live life in this same way. We are hoping to find strength in crossing Boylston street in his honor, it would be greatly appreciated if anyone would consider donating and support this cause.

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

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