A team of 12 runners from Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth) representing different backgrounds and medical professions across the Hudson Valley will compete in the TCS New York City Marathon on November 5. Team members will raise money in support of the patients they care for at WMCHealth’s 10 Hudson Valley hospitals. Here is a closer look at the runners who will “Go the Distance to Make a Difference.”
Melissa Maura, PT, DPT, Monroe, N.Y. – Running for Westchester Medical Center, the flagship of WMCHealth
Melissa, a physical therapist in the trauma intensive care unit at Westchester Medical Center, became interested in a career as a physical therapist after recovering from a car accident when she was 21. “I had physical therapy for over a year in order to get myself back into running,” she said. “The accident was the best thing to happen to me because it made me realize I wanted to be a physical therapist.” After graduating from New York Medical College with a Doctorate of Physical Therapy, she joined Westchester Medical Center as a physical therapist in the TICU. “I am excited to go the distance for our patients just as they are pushing themselves in their own personal 'recovery marathon.'”
Jennifer Qualter, RN, Valley Cottage, N.Y. – Running for Westchester Medical Center, the flagship of WMCHealth
Jennifer, a registered nurse in the post anesthesia care unit at Westchester Medical Center, has been a runner on and off throughout her adulthood. “After I had my twins, I went to the Philadelphia Marathon to cheer on my husband," she said. "I planned to pace him the first few miles to get him started. I ended up running the whole half marathon without training. I have always wanted to do a full marathon myself.” By running in the marathon, she looks forward to “showing people outside the Westchester area that we are the premier provider of medical care in New York’s Hudson Valley region.”
Laura Santiago, RN, Hopewell Junction, N.Y. – Running for MidHudson Regional Hospital, a member of WMCHealth
As a registered nurse in the emergency department of MidHudson Regional Hospital, Laura serves the hospital’s most critically ill and injured patients, providing lifesaving care and support to the hospital’s team of emergency physicians. Running in the TCS New York City Marathon is the realization of a dream for Laura, who began her running career in high school. She has challenged herself by running half-marathons, even completing three in the last year alone.
“The TCS New York City Marathon is an elite event, and accomplishing my goal on one of the biggest stages in my sport while raising money for MidHudson Regional Hospital is a dream come true,” she said.
To make a contribution to support the runners who will “Go the Distance to Make a Difference” for healthcare in the Hudson Valley, click here . All donations collected will support the essential programs and services of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network and its 10 area hospitals.