Seven ran to aide Dot’s Arredondo Family Foundation

Seven runners in Monday’s Boston Marathon raised funds for the Arredondo Family Foundation (AFF) to support military families impacted by the issue of suicide.

The Arredondo Family Foundation, based in Dorchester, is a nonprofit organization that is committed to empowering military families in combating military related suicides through training that teaches how to identify the signs of suicide.

“Our team is running to honor those who have lost family to military related suicide,” said Carlos Arredondo. Mélida and Carlos Arredondo lost their son Alex, a U.S. Marine, in the war in Iraq, and later lost son Brian to suicide. They have dedicated themselves to movements and causes that empower people and give voices to those who cannot speak for themselves.

Carlos was a spectator at the 2013 Boston Marathon supporting the Military Friends Foundation when, after the tragic bombings, he ran to help Jeff Bauman with whom he has formed a lasting bond.

“AFF works hard every day to advocate and care for families who have suffered a loss by suicide as well as educate military families on recognizing the signs of PTSD and suicidal behavior to prevent suicide among their loved ones.” said Mélida Arredondo.

Their team members included Elizabeth Borges of Norton, who created the “Boston Proud” t-shirt in 2014 and has raised over $17,000 for the One Fund, Newton Wellesley Cancer Fund and most recently $7,300 for the Arredondo Family Foundation. Matthew Fogarty from Massapequa, NY; Andrea Hart, originally from Camden, ME; Jennifer Kauffman from Quincy, who was one of the injured at the finish line at the Boston Marathon bombing. Having suffered from PTSD herself, supporting the Arredondo Family Foundation is something she feels passionate about, due to their empowerment of military families in the prevention of military-related suicides as a result of PTSD; Brian Malone a Boston resident who is originally from Leominster; Cara Mezzetti Salmon of Newton and a veteran herself; and Jeff Sanders from Mattapoisett.