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Saugus track coach will run for two in New York marathon

Bob Catinazzo of Saugus is running the NYC Marathon for Zack Cummings of Saugus and Gabe Mandeville of Lakeville in November. (Spenser Hasak)

SAUGUS Saugus High’s track coach and 10-time Boston Marathon runner Bob Catinazzo will be trekking the 26.2 miles through the five boroughs of New York City in November. 

Catinazzo, a Saugus resident, is training to run in the New York City Marathon for Boston Children’s Hospital. He’ll run in honor of two of the hospital’s patients: Gabe Mandeville of Lakeville and Zack Cummings, a Saugus teen. Cummings was chosen as The Item’s 2017 Person of The Year for his town after he nobly agreed to be the face of a fundraising campaign at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in hopes that he could help prevent another child from experiencing what he had gone through. 

“If I can’t go out and run 26 miles for them — it’s the least I can do,” said Catinazzo.

When Catinazzo began running marathons, he intended to stop after five. But during his fifth race, two homemade pressure cooker bombs detonated near the Boston Marathon finish line, killing three people and injuring several hundred others in a terrorist attack. He knew he couldn’t stop after that year. 

“I remember every step I took that day,” said Catinazzo. 

He went on to run five more Boston Marathons. And at 52 years old, he has no intention of stopping any time soon.

“Just like the motto ‘until every child is well,’ I’ll keep going until every child is well,” he said. 

Money raised for the marathon is used for costs that aren’t covered by insurance, such as parking vouchers, pet therapy, and art supplies for the children. 

“It makes you see things a little differently,” said Catinazzo. “I try to take that to my coaching by teaching them there’s more than what’s happening in their own lives.”

He’ll run through Staten Island, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Manhattan’s Central Park on Nov. 3. 

Donations can be made online through the Boston Children’s Hospital website.

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