Haverhill Marine Fundraising for Boston Marathon Charity Run

Elijah Campiglio is raising money for Military Friends through his 2018 Boston Marathon run. (Courtesy photograph)

Haverhill’s Elijah Campiglio is on the run. The 2015 Whittier Technical Vocational High School graduate and Marine is preparing to run April’s Boston Marathon on behalf of the Military Friends charity.

Campiglio decided to take on Boston’s famed 26.2-mile route shortly after completing his basic training commitment, telling WHAV that friends urged him to sign up.

“My friends know me as being extremely fast, and said ‘You should run a marathon.’ I thought, ‘Why not?’ I went online and the first marathon I thought of was Boston,” the 21-year-old said.

When Campiglio laces up his sneakers on April 16, he’ll be running on behalf of Massachusetts veterans. As the reservist explains, the Military Friends charity was an easy choice when it came to picking a worthy cause.

“Every charity is a good charity. I looked at Military Friends because we’re a Massachusetts veteran’s charity,” he says. “It’s local and focuses on veterans in our state. We help out reserve component veterans and were founded in 2011 after September 11. We help the families of fallen veterans with anything they need—housing, travel.”

Campiglio trains weekly with the six-person Military Friends marathon team under the direction of North Andover’s Susan Hurley, who oversees all of the charity teams running Boston. The group makes a 14-mile loop along much of the race day course—but won’t cross the finish line just yet. “It’s superstition,” Campiglio tells WHAV.

When he’s not running, Campiglio is fulfilling his reserve duties as a lance corporal at Chicopee’s Westover Air Reserve Base. His current commitment is eight years, with six of those years on ready reserve duty.

“I’m stationed out of Chicopee, Massachusetts, so once a month I’ll go down there and do whatever it is we need to do,” says Campiglio. “Maybe we’ll take classes or do training, maintenance. I do that for six years and then do two weeks out of summer to go wherever we go to do whatever we do.”

Intending to run the marathon in three hours, Campiglio hopes to raise $8,000 for Military Friends before the April 10 fundraising deadline. He is accepting donations through the Crowd Rise online platform. Checks can also be dropped off in person at Vindicated Cycles, 40 Locust Street in Haverhill.