So this is it"¦my last update. I am feeling a little sad about it being the final post, but so happy for all we were able to accomplish over the past year to help raise money for Heather's prosthetics, and to keep all of you updated on her REMARKABLE progress. I remember the night I created the page. It was the evening before Heather would undergo a below knee amputation. I posted a link to my Facebook page and didn't write anything fancy"¦ just "Please share." And look what all of you helped us accomplish. Through over 9,000 facebook shares, we were able to raise close to $200,000.
Over the last couple of weeks Heather, along with our family and her friends, attended the anniversary tribute events, including a 1 mile walk/run for bombing survivors and a Red Sox game where first responders, survivors and runners were honored. This busy time concluded with the 118th Boston Marathon, where Heather and her friends spent the day at the Forum Restaurant, as they had planned to do last year. Aside from the six that accompanied her last year, dozens of others showed up to express their support, all wearing the new Heather Strong T-Shirts "Still Standing Strong 2014". They shared the space with the Joe Andruzzi Foundation Return to Forum Marathon Watch Party, where Heather and her savior, Matt Chatham, waited for Matt's wife Erin who ran her first marathon ever. (Erin had initially found Heather on the ground after she was struck by the bomb last year.) Heather met Erin at the corner of Comm Ave and Hereford St and joined her, on her running blade leg, for the last half mile of the race. They crossed the finish line together, arms raised, where Matt and my aunt and uncle (Heather's parents) awaited.
Other highlights from the weekend included Heather and her friends meeting Kevin Spacey. He later sat in the front row at a speech Heather delivered for the Spaulding Rehab Runners at the Revere Hotel and started a standing ovation! And Heather's friend Marc Paquette, to whom she donated a bib given to her by the BAA, ran the marathon in her honor and raised over $7,000 for her future prosthetics! What a week!
Even though this is my final planned update on "gofundme,", the site will remain open indefinitely for future donations. Heather has lots of exciting things planned over the next few months, including delivering the keynote speeches at the University of West Virginia School of Medicine's Commencement, the Physician Assistant Foundation awards dinner in Boston and the Windstorm Insurance Network conference in New Jersey, just to name a few. For future updates, please remember to "like" her Facebook page, "Heather Abbott: Road to Recovery" or follow her on Twitter @Heather_Abbott1 And if you're interested in buying a new Heather Strong T-Shirt, you can order them using the following link: http://heather-strong.myshopify.com/.
Proceeds will go to Heather's Recovery Fund.
Thank you SO MUCH for all of your support over the past year. We are FOREVER grateful.