Northshore Magazine

Northshore March 2020

Northshore magazine showcases the best that the North Shore of Boston, MA has to offer.

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Page 37 of 123

NORTHSHOREMAG.COM 36 MARCH 2020 PHOTOGRAPHS BY TIM LLEWELLYN kind of support might this person, and their family, be in need of ? Runway for Recovery's signature event is an annual October runway show, held at Boston's Park Plaza Hotel, where New England area breast cancer patients, survivors, and family members walk the runway to honor themselves and their loved ones. The night is full of hope and perseverance. The Greater Boston area comes together, from clothing shops to local salons, to lend dresses and provide hair and makeup for the models. Throughout the year, the runway show is supported by a host of other events such as Sip Shop Support fundraising nights in local cities and towns as well as charity cycle rides at fitness studios, including Fuel Training Studio, Kick it By Eliza, Orange Theory Fitness, and barre3. The Runway community has met more than 300 men, women, and children who have been impacted by breast cancer. Proceeds from the runway show, silent auction, and sponsorships have totaled more than $1.1 million. "Funds have addressed many of the burdens associated with caring for a loved one with breast cancer, including grief counseling, Shown here, Olivia Achtmeyer Boger Runway for Recovery is supported in part by the generous sponsorship of Winston Flowers, Market Basket, The EY-Parthenon Group, Suzanne B. Lowell Lighting Design, and Copper Hound Pictures. It's not unusual to hear of an organization with the goal of eradicating breast cancer—and for good reason, the disease is one that has touched many, be it a mom, a grandmother, an aunt, a sister, a friend, or someone in the community. There's no doubt that funding research to one day wipe out the disease is a noble cause. But after losing her mother to breast cancer, Olivia Achtmeyer Boger had a slightly different idea. Growing up in Concord with Candace Achtmeyer as her mom was a catalyst that set Boger on the path she walks today. Her mother was a force of nature—an involved citizen, a loving wife, and a devoted parent to her four children. When she was diagnosed with breast cancer, Candace waged a very private battle, and put up a valiant, decade-long fight, which ended 18 years ago, when Boger was a college student at George Washington University. After losing her mom, Boger didn't know what she could do to change the circumstances for others in a similar situation, but she was motivated to do something. She kept circling back to how her mother wasn't defined by breast cancer and how she simply did not let it define her at all. "My mom's diagnosis is what brought me to the breast cancer community but the mission of my organization, Runway for Recovery, came to be because of the way my mom lived her life. A large part of her breast cancer experience was separating breast cancer from the rest of her life, about being determined to live her life for herself and for family and friends," explains Boger, who is the executive director of the organization she founded. With that inspiration, a major purpose of Runway for Recovery is to provide wrap- around services for families—to focus on the person diagnosed but with a wider view. Is this person a mom? A daughter? A wife? What Reimagining the road to recovery. BY LAUREN TORLONE MAHONEY RUNWAY FOR A CAUSE overnight camps for children experiencing a loss, and other vital comforts for families of patients and those who provide care," explains Boger. Funding has also benefitted Tufts Cancer Center's Candace MacMillen Achtmeyer Fund and Massachusetts General Hospital's Patient and Caregiver Fund, under the direction of Dr. Jack Erban. Boger is a Newburyport resident, and when she's not working on behalf of her organization she's a wife and mom to a full brood of Boger men, including her husband Andy and three young boys. Because she gives so much to others, it's easy to forget she has had her own loss. It is awe-inspiring to see how much good one person has created out of such painful circumstances. FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT F A C E S + P L A C E S

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