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AIDS Walk Boston

Walnut Hill School for the Arts Supports AIDS Walk Boston

By | AIDS Action Committee, AIDS Walk & 5K Run Boston, Community, Fenway Health Newsroom, HIV/AIDS | No Comments
Walnut Hill School for the Arts, located just west of Boston in Natick, will hold its 2015 commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 6. Early the next morning, instead of sleeping in or heading to the beach, 15 students will lace up their sneakers and take part in the 30th Annual AIDS Walk Boston. Though these Walnuts (as they call themselves) were born long after the peak of the AIDS epidemic, they are devoted supporters of the Walk and work hard to raise funds and awareness for AIDS Action on Walnut Hill’s campus throughout the school year. For over a decade 
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Why I Walk: Kelly Rush

By | AIDS Action Committee, AIDS Walk & 5K Run Boston, Fenway Health Newsroom, HIV/AIDS | No Comments
At 6.2 miles, the AIDS Walk Boston route is not very long compared to other fundraising walks. But for Kelly Rush, it represents a long journey to self-acceptance. Since he first started walking in 2011, Rush and his team, now called Divas and Devils, have raised more than $21,000 for AIDS Action Committee, making them one of AIDS Walk Boston’s most prolific fundraising groups. It’s a long way from where he was 15 years ago—or even six years ago. On July 11, 2001 Rush was taken by ambulance to Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital with a high fever and severe dehydration. 
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Why I Walk: Jim McDonnel

By | AIDS Action Committee, AIDS Walk & 5K Run Boston, Fenway Health Newsroom, HIV/AIDS | No Comments
When Jim McDonnel took his first steps for AIDS Walk Boston, HIV/AIDS was greatly misunderstood and widely stigmatized. Mentions of AIDS-related deaths flooded LGBT newspapers. Entire communities were falling ill. Despite the urgency felt by those affected and their loved ones, there was still precious little federal money going towards AIDS treatment and research. “In those days, there was so much education needed,” Jim said. “People were scared to death, but they really had no idea what AIDS was. The biggest hurdle was making people understand that it wasn’t just a disease for gay people.” After hearing about the work 
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Why I Walk: Bette Byrnes, John’s Team

By | AIDS Action Committee, AIDS Walk & 5K Run Boston, Fenway Health Newsroom, HIV/AIDS | One Comment
If you ask Bette Byrnes, a longtime AIDS Walk Boston and 5K Run supporter, why she still makes the trip from Florida to Boston every June, she doesn’t have to think about her answer: it’s about home and family. “I’m from Boston originally – that’s still home,” she said. “And no matter what, I don’t want anyone to ever forget that AIDS took my son from me. In his memory, I will always walk as long as I can.” Bette’s first AIDS Walk Boston was in 1991 – the same year that her son, John, was diagnosed with the virus. 
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John Van Buskirk, James McPhee and Kevin Matthews at AIDS Walk Boston

Kevin Matthews: Why I Walk

By | Community, Fenway Health Newsroom, HIV/AIDS | No Comments
For me, AIDS Walk Boston has been a bit of a “family affair” since 1993. We lost a nephew/cousin, James A. Matthews to AIDS in January, 1992. My cousin Jim was the brother that I never had, Best Man at my wedding and my confidante. We didn’t see that much of one another at times, but kept in touch with frequent letters. As I was “coming out” and preparing to leave my marriage, my parents and I learned of Jim’s illness and realized that he was in the last stages of trying to deal with it. His family had been 
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