BOSTON (CBS) – When linebacker Tedy Bruschi returned from a stroke to play with the Patriots, it was a remarkable accomplishment. It was also the first step in laying the groundwork for his next team.
“Tedy’s Team” is a group of runners dedicated to getting the message out about stroke awareness.
Some team members personally suffered a stroke. For Frank Mastrangelo, it happened a year to the day after a stroke took his dad.
“It was a wake-up call for me,” said Mastrangelo. “I wanted to be around for my kids. I wanted to be around for my wife. It was time to change things.”
Katie Jerdee was 20 years old when she suffered her stroke. She was a young and healthy athlete, just as former patriot Tedy Bruschi was when he suffered his stroke only weeks after winning Super Bowl 39.
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Katie saw the connection when she was approached about joining Tedy’s Team.
“He returned to football. I returned to soccer. I thought, ‘Yeah, I always wanted to do a marathon in my life. I’ll give it a try,'” said Jerdee.
Monday will be Jerdee’s fourth Boston Marathon, and she’ll run this one with her sister Hannah, while Mastrangelo will carry the memory of his dad with him.
If you’re out on the course on Monday, Mastrangelo shouldn’t be too hard to spot. He’ll be the one in the football helmet.
Twenty-six miles is hard enough in shorts and running shoes, but Mastrangelo’s goal isn’t about setting a personal best, but getting his message out.
“If I have to stop a hundred times during the marathon to explain why I’m wearing the helmet, then I’ve gotten the word out there,” said Mastrangelo.
Tedy’s Team has 43 runners and over the past six years, they’ve raised more than$1.7 million.