Strong Showing for MGH Institute at 2014 Boston Marathon

MGH Institute School of Nursing student Matthew Ellam at the Mile 24 water station during the 2014 Boston Marathon.
MGH Institute School of Nursing student Matthew Ellam at the Mile 24 water station during the 2014 Boston Marathon.

All five members of Team IHP, representing Navy Yard graduate school MGH Institute of Health Professions, crossed the finish line at the 2014 Boston Marathon on April 21. 

Three of them were returning to complete their 2013 attempt, which was halted because of the bombing tragedy.

“It was absolutely amazing from start to finish. Everyone was just fantastic!” said Kate Breen Grevelding ’00, ’02, who ran the 26.2-mile course in 3:59:11 a year after she was among the thousands or runners who were stopped short.

Grevelding was the first Team IHP runner to cross the Copley Square finish line. As so often happens with groups with varying degrees of readiness, she did not connect with her other teammates.

“I only wish that I was actually able to find the other IHP runners but I saw that [Team IHP members] did finish and I am so incredibly happy for them,” she said.

Master of Science of Nursing student Matthew Ellam grew up in Hopkinton, but this was his first time running in the Patriots Day race. He was inspired to join Team IHP by last year’s attack.

“[Marathon Monday] takes on a certain gravity to honor the victims,” Ellam, who completed the race in 4:39:14, told the Boston Globe, referring to the three people killed and more than 250 injured. “I’m not here to have a good time as much as to show my support.”

Assistant Professor Joanna Christodoulou and Associate Professor Margaret Kjelgaard ’97, both of whom are faculty members in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, ran the entire course together. Although they attempted to cross the finish line at the same time, it was Kjelgaard, with a time of 5:27:43, who will go into the official record books as coming in one second ahead of Christodoulou.

The fifth member of Team IHP - CSD alumna Kara Beckwith Coffin ’11 finished in 5:06:23.

Two DPT graduates who ran - Meghan Costello ’02 (5:15:33) and Laura Driscoll ’05 (5:33:00) – were prominently featured in a Boston Globe Marathon section published April 20, the day before the race.

Driscoll told the paper she decided to run after being asked by Erika Brannock, a survivor whom Driscoll assisted at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, to use one of the two bibs Brannock received. A seasoned veteran of several triathlons and half-marathons, Driscoll said she was honored to run for Brannock, a Maryland resident whose left leg was amputated above the knee and a metal rod inserted in her right leg after being seriously injured as a spectator while waiting for her mother to complete the 2013 race.

Costello said she was inspired to run her first marathon after witnessing the many survivors whom she witnessed as a PT at Massachusetts General Hospital. She ran for the One Fund.

Like many on Team IHP, first-year Master of Science in Nursing student Megan Hall was making her second attempt at the race.

“It was an amazing feeling to cross the finish line this year,” said Hall, who ran for the Massachusetts General Hospital for Children, where she is a member of the Pediatric Oncology team. “It was challenging with the heat but it was a great experience to come back and finish what I had started last year. The crowds throughout the course were unbelievable and helped push me through to the finish.”

Two members of the Institute community who work at Spaulding Rehabilitation Network, DPT graduate Jess Guilbert ’11 (4:31:06) who assisted several bombing survivors during the past year, and Institute Trustee Oz Mondejar (6:00:27), also completed the race.

Several alumni returned to work in the medical tents, including School of Nursing graduate Roz Puleo ’11, and DPT graduate David Nolan ’06, who led more than 80 PTs in tents at the finish line; among those working with him was DPT graduate Michael Monteiro ’11.

In addition, many who were at the 2013 Marathon were again spectators this year. They included Master of Science in Nursing student Lisa Conti, who has raised more than $10,000 for 2013 survivors via her charity Make Room For Love that she formed days after the bombing; and DPT graduate Dara Casparian ’13, who was there to cheer for well-known survivors Heather Abbott and Roseann Sdoia whom she helped over the past year working at Spaulding.


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