Keelie Verbeek

Special Correspondent


On Saturday, September 27 the fourth annual “Tim’s Trot” will be held at the Holliston High School in honor of Timothy O’Connell to benefit The Timothy O’Connell Foundation.

According to the website, The Timothy O’Connell Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, established in 2008.

After Tim passed in September of 2008, the O’Connell’s were looking for a way to fund an organization directly related to the form of Leukemia Tim had. The family was already donating to charities when the idea for the trot first reached the O’Connell family.

The idea came in the form of Max Athy.

Max contacted Joanne O’Connell with the idea of a 3k in 2011. “It was Max’s baby,” said Joanne.

The hope for the trot was to include everyone while having fun and keeping Tim’s memory alive.

According to Miller School Principal, Dave Keim, the trot has done exactly that.

“So many people from the community come out to join the fight against leukemia in memory of one of the very special children that grew up in Holliston,” said Mr. Keim.

Raising over $300,000 in the past six years, the O’Connells hope to keep that number high by raising about $75,000, to cover a pledge to Make-A-Wish of Massachusetts and Rhode Island ($25,000 per year for next three years).

The Foundation also donates to a number of other charities including an annual gift to the Children’s Hospital Boston/ Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Pediatric Oncology Siblings Program or “Just for Sibbs,” a research grant to Dr. Gordon’s lab at the University of Minnesota Medical Center, scholarship money to students in the Holliston area, and other organizations like Camp Sunshine, and Flashes of Hope.

“There are more causes then there is money,” said Mr. and Mrs. O’Connell.

The largest donation the Timothy O’Connell Foundation/the O’Connell family has ever made was $75,000 to the Make A Wish Foundation.

With the participant levels rising from around 247 to just under 600 runners, the family believes they will reach their goal.

“It always feels like Tim is present. It’s an uplifting afternoon, the community itself feels good, and everyone looks so happy,” said Mrs. O’Connell.

If interested in participating in this event contact Joanne O’Connell at joanneoconnell@comcast.net or 508-662-7282 by September 25


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