26 runners ran to Boston; 4 of them went on to run in marathon - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

26 runners ran to Boston; 4 of them went on to run in marathon

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CLEVELAND, TN (WRCB) - Eight days and 1,078 miles was all that separated 26 runners from their goal to run from Cleveland, Tennessee to Boston, Massachusetts.  The runners arrived in Boston Sunday.

As if over 1,000 miles wasn't enough, four of the 26 runners took on the additional challenge of running in the Boston marathon on Monday.

"I don't know if I can put into words what this meant to me, but I knew I had a lot of folks that I didn't want to let down," said Matt Carlson.

Carlson was just one of the 26 runners from Cleveland who set out on the 1,000 mile journey to run all the way to Boston Massachusetts, just in time for the Boston marathon.

The runners were split up into teams and traded off running miles until reaching their destination.

"I was very fortunate that my team knew that I was doing a marathon today so they actually ran a few extra miles for me so I only had to do about 30 miles this last week," said Carlson.

But even with fewer miles, Carlson won't tell you the experience was easy.

"There were actually a number of moments that we said, wow this is a lot tougher," said Carlson.

Monday morning he and three others put their shoes to the pavement one more time.

He says the support of the communities is what helped them make 26.2 more miles.

"It was the community that helped it happen," said Carlson. “So yes a sense of pride; making sure we all made it to the finish line because we were doing this for a lot more people than just the four of us."

He says they were Tennessee tough for those affected by the Boston bombings last year and it will be an experience he will never forget.

"This trip was amazing. This team was amazing. These two non-profits that we were raising money for; just incredible," said Carlson.

$63,500 was raised during the run and they tell Channel 3 more is flooding in.

If you would like to donate to the cause, click here.

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