MATTAPOISETT (CBS) – The father of Conrad Roy is running the Boston Marathon to try and spare other families from the pain he still feels after his son committed suicide.
In 2017, his 18-year-old son’s girlfriend, Michelle Carter, was convicted of coercing the teenage boy into killing himself.
Now, Conrad’s father, who has never been a runner, is taking on the Boston course, with one thing in mind.
“I just want to run in his honor. I just want people to know that there’s always people you can reach out to. You might feel bad one day, but you’ll get through it. I just want to pass that along,” says Conrad Roy Jr., father of Conrad Roy III.
One way people can get help is through the Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
The younger Conrad’s suicide in 2014 became international news because of the unusual circumstances surrounding it.
A year ago, Conrad’s father was anything but a runner.
“In the beginning just thinking about running was difficult. I just didn’t want to do it,” he said.
But he persisted.
“It feels like my son’s on some of the runs I go on and I can talk to him. It just seemed it helped me a lot dealing with my son’s loss,” he said.
On Patriot’s Day, this first-time marathoner will arrive at the starting line with a mission.
“One of my goals is to finish the Boston Marathon in under 3 hours and 55 minutes,” he said.
His second goal: to raise $25, 000 for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
For this father, crossing the finish line will be a victory, indeed.
“I’m looking forward to that moment, and I know he’ll be looking down on me,” he said.
Conrad Roy Jr. is about halfway to his fundraising goal with a little over 2 weeks to go before Marathon 2018.
WBZ-TV is your Marathon station. You can watch the 112nd Boston Marathon here on Monday, April 16.