Dave McGillivray is a busy guy most of the time. But during the Boston Marathon weekend in Boston, he takes things to a new level almost every year.
This year was no different. In addition to the dozens of meetings, appearances and roles tied to being the primary race director of the 120th running of the Boston Marathon, McGillivray, 61, also found the time and energy to run the race once again.
Late on Monday night, long after 26,639 runners had crossed the finish line, McGillivray ran the 26.2-mile course, too, along with Matt Auger from Mashpee, Mass., and Jason Todd from Newport News, Va., in about 4 hours, 29 minutes. The team was supported along the course by Ron Kramer and McGillivray’s brother Bob McGillivray, who has been with him for every nighttime marathon.
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“Leading up to the (2016) race, I constantly said that it felt like there was a sense of calmness and peacefulness to this year’s race and that is exactly how it all played out,” said McGillivray, president of DMSE Sports event production company. “All went well on race day and there were no major issues. It seemed like it was a fun day for all. And, there were so many inspiring stories throughout the day—they kept coming and coming and coming. The 2014 race was epic, but this year can truly be dubbed ‘The Year of Inspiration.’ ”
“As for my night run, it could not have gone better,” he said. “Slow and steady, but mission accomplished. It was a long day with a happy ending.”
McGillivray, who has now completed 145 marathons overall, was greeted at the finish line by his family, including siblings Susan West, Denise Potts, Alan McGillivray and Bob McGillivray.
McGillivray first gained national prominence with his 1978 cross country run—from Medford, Oregon to Medford, Mass.—that took 80 days and raised almost $150,000 for the Jimmy Fund—the first money any runner ever raised for a cancer charity, according to Runner’s World. He has completed a number of similar feats of endurance since his groundbreaking cross country trek, including a second cross-country run in 2004 from San Francisco to Boston as part of TREK USA, a relay team event that raised more than $300,000 for five children’s charities.
Over his career, McGillivray has logged more than 150,000 miles and completed nine Hawaii Ironman triathlons in addition to his 145 marathons.
McGillivray, a Medford native who lives in North Andover, Mass., is a pioneer in what is now one of the most important aspects of the endurance sports industry—combining athletics with philanthropy. Nearly every DMSE Sports event combines fitness and fundraising, giving back to the Jimmy Fund and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Children’s Hospital, Lazarus House and many others charities and non-profit organizations in New England and across the country. He along with all the events he has directed have helped raised more than $100 million for charity over the years.