Sisters Unable To Run Boston Marathon Due To Coronavirus Cross Finish Line On Horses
Two sisters who were unable to complete this year’s Boston Marathon due to tge coronavirus pandemic found a unique way to cross the finish line – and send a message as well.
BOSTON (CBS) – Two sisters who were unable to complete this year’s Boston Marathon due to the coronavirus pandemic found a unique way to cross the finish line – and send a message.
Jess Halliday and her sister, Tanya Halliday, were planning to run the Boston Marathon for the Cam Neely Foundation.
They trained for the April event, and when it was postponed until September, they retrained for the fall. The in-person race was later canceled for the first time ever and turned into a virtual run.
The Halliday sisters are upset the B.A.A. decided not to carry over charity team runners’ bibs into 2021.
Jess, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2018, recently had surgery to remove half of her lung. So on Monday, Jess and and Tanya rode their horses for parts of the marathon course instead of running.
Though they initially wanted to ride the horses for 26.2 miles, they instead loaded them into their trailer and drove to Hopkinton. The sisters stopped at several iconic spots along the course for photos and short rides, then drove close to the finish line, unloaded and rode the horses down Boylston Street.
“I figure while I can’t run right now, my main career and my passion, my horses, could help me do it. There’s a saying that horses give us the wings we lack. At this point I guess he’s going to give me running shoes too,” Jess said.
Tanya said her sister’s fight has been inspirational to watch.
“In 2018 when she was diagnosed with cancer it was devastating for our entire family,” she said. “But the way that she’s handled it with such class, such grace, and being so strong not only in her own fight, but so supportive of others, has been amazing.”
The sisters said after they crossed the finish line on horseback that they hope the B.A.A. will reconsider its decision on how it handles charitable runners.
“We disagree with the statement that it’s a lost year and virtual run satisfies requirements,” she said. “We think there are other options available, whether it be deferring people over the next four or five runnings of the Boston Marathons that could be pursued instead. We hope they’ll take us and all of the other Boston Marathon runners, their hard work and dedication, into consideration.”