Friday, January 20, 2006

A Little Good News

$87,000 was raised for Dick & Rick Hoyt:

A boost for uplifting pair

HOPKINTON -- Dick and Rick Hoyt, the father-and-son Boston Marathon running team who had fallen on hard times, enjoyed a reversal of fortune last night.

About 150 friends and supporters presented the pair with a check for $87,000. Some of the money will go toward a specially equipped van for Rick Hoyt, 43, who is quadriplegic and needs the van to transport his equipment. The rest will go into a trust fund that will pay for his future care. The Hopkinton Athletic Association coordinated the fund raising and last night’s reception at Hopkinton High School.

"We will never forget this evening," said Dick Hoyt, his eyes wet with tears. Rick, who is unable to speak, used a computer-simulated voice to tell his friends, "Thanks to you, I have the nicest van that I have ever had."

The Hoyts, with Dick pushing Rick in a wheelchair, will run the Marathon for the 25th time in April. The pair have participated in more than 1,000 athletic events, including grueling triathlons.

A story in the Daily News last month told of the Hoyt’s recent misfortunes. Rick’s van failed, and a fallen tree damaged Dick Hoyt’s home in Holland.The elder Hoyt, who has always been his son’s lifeline, has begun to worry about Rick’s welfare once he is gone.

Once the story ran, it spread to concerned friends across the country. Contributions poured in from individuals and businesses in New England, Florida, the Carolinas, California and other states.

According to Tim Kilduff of the HAA, about 400 people and companies made donations, including one Boston executive who donated $50,000.

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