Former soldiers run half marathon for bigger cause

From left, Dan Geraghty, John Byrne, Joey Gay and Anthony Cambareri stand on Main Street in Lake Placid before embarking on the Lake Placid Half Marathon on Sunday morning. (Enterprise photo — Justin A. Levine)

LAKE PLACID — Roughly 1,000 people completed either the Lake Placid Marathon or Half on Sunday, but only a handful of runners were carrying military packs — four men who were raising money to help fellow soldiers.

John Byrne, a U.S. Army veteran, said his group was running to raise money for the Rangers Lead the Way Fund.

“It’s a fund that helps fallen (Army) Rangers and their families deal with the funeral costs, all sorts of stuff,” Byrne said. “Or amputees. They come to your house, and they readjust the house so you’re comfortable after your service time.

“I’m not a Ranger. I was an infantryman with Anthony (Cambareri). He’s the spearhead of the whole thing.”

The group was made up of Byrne, Cambareri, Dan Geraghty and Joey Gay. The four donned Lead the Way Fund shirts and military packs during the half marathon portion of the Lake Placid Marathon.

“I’m a 9/11 survivor. I was at the towers on 9/11,” Geraghty said. “I was actually just working there. I was a civilian at the time. But John was one of the guys who deployed. Anthony was one of the guys who deployed.

“When John got back eight years ago, we raised money for the Warrior Project. We were just looking for people to support and keep the message out there. Just because this never-ending war continues doesn’t mean that people haven’t been hurt, that they don’t need help.

“I know it’s cliche, but some gave all, and a lot of gave plenty,” he continued. “And they’ve got to live with that. They’ve got to live with the results for a long time, so we want to help them the best we can.”

The Army Ranger Lead the Way Fund offers former Rangers a number of services, including help with medical costs and transitioning into a career after the military. It also helps Gold Star families, those whose loved ones have died in service to the country.

COMMENTS