United Airlines NYC Half Marathon Team
The United Airlines NYC Half Marathon Team is ready for action on March 17. Won’t you help these dedicated runners raise funds for sarcoma research? Check out our team members below and learn why they run.
In August of 2023, after spending a week in Long Beach Island as a family, my wife started experiencing abdominal pain and after multiple trips to the Dr. she was told she had gastritis and that it should subside on its own over time. As the weeks went on, it seemed to persist and on Sept 29, 2023, she underwent a major surgery. According to the surgeon, it was one of the more difficult of his career due to location and size of the mass. Pathology results later confirmed it was an aggressive Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor, which is a rare form of Sarcoma. With the expertise of her care team, the tumor was fully removed and today my wife is cancer free. I am running as part of the Race to Cure Sarcoma (RTCS) Race team in order to raise much needed funding for research to find a cure, education, and advocacy for Sarcoma patients. Without the amazing care that my wife received, she may not be here today. We know that countless others are battling this disease every day, and we want to do anything we can to help support that battle and raise awareness for rare cancers.Support Sean
Rene is currently an Operating Room Nurse at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts. Originally a native of San Diego, Irene has been working as a Cardiac, Vascular and Thoracic OR Nurse over the past 10 years in her 3 favorite cities: Chicago, New York and Boston. She received her Bachelors in Nursing from Boston College Connell School of Nursing and Masters of Science from Boston College Woods College of Advancing Studies. Irene played Division I Softball at Boston College during her collegiate career and has been drawn to running and the sport of Triathlon after graduation. Rene is looking forward to running for the Race to Cure Sarcoma Team to support her friend who was diagnosed with cardiac sarcoma last year and to support those who have been impacted by the disease.Support Rene
"My name is Julia Lunger, I'm 24 years old and I'm very excited to be running the United Airlines NYC Half Marathon for the third time - this year with the SFA! I really started to get into running when I moved to NYC almost three years ago after graduating from Syracuse University, and I'm so excited to represent the SFA this year. Sarcoma research is an especially meaningful cause to me & my family because my dad's company, Adaptimmune, is working on developing a drug to combat synovial sarcoma, and knowing I can contribute to their work in this way is very exciting. The FDA accepted Adaptimmune's BLA application for afami-cel for the treatment of advanced synovial sarcoma with a target action date of August 4th, so hopefully there will be a new therapy available this year!Support Julia
Sarah grew up outside of Boston and started running competitively while working at Education First (EF), an international education and student travel company, after college. It was there she found her love of long-distance running and a forever friend in Tasha Nathan. Sarah and Tasha both worked at EF and helped develop an emerging exchange program for gap year students. Sarah is thrilled to run the NYC half in admiration of Tasha’s perseverance through a sarcoma diagnosis. Having recently moved to NYC, Sarah is excited to use her training as an excuse to explore the city and join her two sisters who are also running the New York Half!Support Sarah
I am a 34-year-old from Providence, RI where I live with my two amazing dogs Luna and Vincenzo and enjoy being a part of our diverse local running community particularly ‘Gansett Run Club. On January 10, 2024 my step-dad lost his 36-year-old nephew Jack DiRaimo after a four-year battle with Synovial Sarcoma Cancer. Jack DiRaimo was a son, husband, father, brother, nephew, cousin, stepson, a friend but most importantly he was a FIGHTER. With the blessing from Jack’s family and some divine intervention, I was able to secure a spot on the Race to Cure Sarcoma Team allowing me to raise money, bring awareness, and honor Jack’s legacy. As my sneakers hit the pavement of the Big Apple, every step I take forward will be for those who have had a battle with sarcoma and for those who lost that ultimate fight. To the entire DiRaimo family--Russell, Marilyn, Sandra, Dasja, Ryan, Cyanna, Gary, Rebecca, Christopher, Renee and more, to Jack’s friends, coaches, doctors and supporters, THANK YOU. Your support and encouragement have been overwhelming and I am truly grateful to run in memory of Jack.Support RJ