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Former Briarcliff Resident Visits Haiti To Run Nine Marathons In Nine Days

Josh Elkes will be running nine marathons in nine days in Haiti.
Josh Elkes will be running nine marathons in nine days in Haiti. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Joanna Brody

BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. -- A Briarcliff High School graduate is about to embark on the trip of a lifetime.

Josh Elkes is one of seven people traveling to Haiti from Feb. 21 to March 1 and running 230 miles in nine days to raise money for Team Tassy. It is an organization that works to prepare and place the poor in Haiti into good, dignified jobs so they can pull themselves out of poverty.

Team Tassy, founded by former "Survivor" contestant Ian Rosenberger, hopes to raise $75,000. The run will culminate in a 56.7-mile "double marathon."

The journey begins on Feb. 21 in northernmost Cap Haitien and ends nine days later (including one day of rest) with the 56.7-mile "double marathon" to the finish line in Jacmel on the island's southern tip.

"It should be quite an adventure," said Elkes, who ran a 50-mile race last September. "It's going to be spectacular experience. It's something I couldn't say no to."

Elkes started running marathons in 2011. While attending Briarcliff, he was kicked off the track team and said he was awful at cross country.

"It turned it into something I liked to do as soon as people stopped telling me to do it," Elkes said. "I ran a half marathon and felt like I could do it again."

Elkes said he enjoys running 50 mile races more than regular marathons.

"It's more enjoyable," Elkes said. "For a distance like that, you really can't run that fast. No one is sprinting to the finish line, you're just doing it to finish. It takes a bit more discipline."

Elkes thinks he'll be able to handle running 230 miles in Haiti.

"A week isn't very long," Elkes said. "I'll be seeing a lot of new things and doing it for a good cause and a great organization."

Team Tassey aims to end poverty by empowering the individual.

"These are long term solutions," Elkes said. "If you can send one person in the right direction, it impacts them forever."

Elkes next hopes to tackle the Comrades Marathon, a 56.2 mile run in South Africa.

To support Elkes' cause, visit https://www.crowdrise.com/joshelkestt

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