Peter Hanson is running down a dream - a dream to find a cure for autism.
For a third consecutive year, Peter, of Woburn, MA, has run the Boston Marathon in honor of his son, Conor, who has autism, and supported the National Alliance for Autism Research (NAAR). In just three years, he has raised approximately $30,000 for NAAR.
This year, Peter set a new record by raising total of $13,376!
"Once again, family, friends and local contractors stepped up for autism research," he said. "In my letter that goes out every first week in February, I ask everyone to dig deeper and spread the word about NAAR."
Peter's goal for the 2004 Boston Marathon was to raise $10,000 - a goal he exceeded thanks to his tremendous efforts and the support of his family, friends and associates. One supporter, the Connolly Family Foundation, provided a $1,000 donation.
"Not only did we shatter our goal, but we also have more and more people becoming aware about autism and how many lives it can touch," he said.
"I run the Boston Marathon in honor of my son, Conor. He is the one that has inspired me to do this since 2001."
Peter gave a special thank you to his "faithful followers" that attend the Marathon each year and find him between miles 25 and 26.
"It sure is a wonderful feeling to see their faces at the race," he said. "Next year when you watch the Boston Marathon, think of someone you know who has a son, daughter, brother, sister or cousin that has autism and do something with them."
NAAR is extremely grateful for Peter and all of his supporters for making this donation possible. Peter is a prime example of the extraordinary people that bring our organization to life and make it possible for NAAR to fund the finest research in the world.
Thank you again, Peter!
Established in 1994, the National Alliance for Autism Research (NAAR) is the first non-profit organization in the country dedicated to funding and accelerating biomedical research for autism spectrum disorders. The organization was established by parents of children with autism concerned about the limited amount of funding for autism research. To date, NAAR has committed nearly $30 million in grants for biomedical research projects worldwide that seek to find the causes, prevention, effective treatments and, ultimately, cure for autism spectrum disorders. Walk for Autism Research is the organization's signature fundraising and autism awareness event, which is held annually in numerous communities across the United States. Additionally, NAAR was instrumental in establishing the Autism Tissue Program, a parent-led brain tissue donation program for autism research.