Last year it was Mark Parsons and Juan Arraya. This year they are both in again and they’ll run with Roxy Enica, Meghan Martucci, Mythe Molenveld, Brian O’Connor, John Cassas, Dave Grow, and Patricio Misitrano. This group of paddle players took the challenge to run the NYC 1/2 Marathon on March 15th, 2015 AND raise money for the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF).

One of the best somehow unknown paddle players in the East Coast, Dave Grow, was the one who put this group of paddle/runners together. He left the tennis teaching profession a few years ago to start a jewelry and accessories boutique with his wife that quickly became 2 large retail operations in New Canaan and Westport called She la la. Being away from the courts did not prevent him from staying close to the tennis and paddle community in Fairfield County.

Dave’s story with Multiple Myeloma started in 2007 when his dad was diagnosed with a disease called Multiple Myeloma, a blood cancer that typically starts in your bones and quickly spreads from there, most commonly resulting in kidney failure. There was no known cure, and the average life span after diagnosis was something around 5 years.

Besides being a former tennis pro and an FCPTL and Premier Paddle League player. Dave is also a runner and last year he saw that Parsons and Arraya were trash talking each other on Facebook about running the the NYC 1/2 Marathon.

“I reached out and let them know about the MMRF and Mark ended up raising a bunch of money and ran the race with my dad’s name on his bib. Thus was born our team”.

This year he put together an even more impressive team of paddle players who will raise money and bring awareness for a great cause.

Why do they run?

Mark Parsons: I am running to support MMRF and hope to not finish last. Even if I do finish last I will know that all of us running for such a great cause is all that matters.

Juan Arraya: I am running because I love running and i want to give Parsons a chance to beat me this year since last year he was far far far away behind me. Running for a cause makes it more fun and gives me an even better reason!

Patricio Misitrano: When Dave told me about MMRF and the NYC half I didn’t think twice supporting a cause so close to his heart. It is a win-win. I run and get some exercise while we expose tons of people to the work that the MMRF does while raising money that goes to a great cause.

David Grow: I’m running to raise money and awareness for the MMRF since my father has been living with the disease since 2007. I also believe very much in their process which is revolutionizing how cancer research is conducted. Since everyone’s life is touched by cancer in one way or another, it’s a great organization to get behind and support in any way you can. I’ve chosen running since it’s something I love and I’ve been lucky to have my friends from another passion (paddle) jump in and do something for the greater good.

How can you help?

Each paddle/runner has a profile page on the MMRF site where you can donate and support them.

  • Click HERE for Meghan Martucci’s page
  • Click HERE for Myrthe Molenveld’s page
  • Click HERE for Roxy Enica’s page
  • Click HERE for David Grow’s page
  • Click HERE Brian O’Connor’s page
  • Click HERE for Mark Parsons’ page
  • Click HERE for John Cassas’ page
  • Click HERE for Juan Arraya’s page
  • Click HERE for Patricio Misitrano’s page
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Patricio Misitrano