HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – An Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Airman is channeling his passion for running into something he feels is truly bigger than himself.
Maj. Kristopher Williams, Kill Chain Integration Branch chief, will represent Boston Children’s Hospital in the 2021 Boston Marathon Oct. 11, but said he didn’t discover his love for the endurance sport until he was already serving as an Air Force officer.
“One day, I just decided I would go for a run,” said Williams. “It’s been my catharsis ever since.”
Williams has since run three full marathons, several half, and countless 10Ks. He said he has been dreaming of the day he could run the renowned marathon, and an assignment to Hanscom was the perfect opportunity.
In his interview with Boston Children’s Hospital as to why he would be a good candidate for their team, Williams explained that he was no stranger to pediatric care.
While Williams and his wife have four children, three biological and one adopted, the couple has fostered more than 30 children.
“Every marathon I’ve run so far has been about me, but this one is for someone else,” he said. “This is for Patrick and Hunter.”
Through his volunteer work with the hospital, Williams was matched with two patients, Patrick, 15, from Burlington, Massachusetts, and Hunter, 6, who lives at Hanscom, and will run in their honor.
Earlier this year, with Hunter in the stands, Williams ran a 5K wearing a full-body blowup costume of Hunter’s favorite character, Buzz Lightyear. Hunter even ran the last 100 yards of the race with him.
“Kris doesn’t have a child at Boston Children’s, but he’s going above and beyond to take on the same vision we have,” said Hunter’s father Tim, a Hanscom resident. “His words are small, but his actions are huge. It reinforces the idea of our military family.”
With only weeks left until race day, Williams is honing his training both physically and mentally.
“When I’m in the race and I’m in pain, just waiting for the run to finish, I just think of these children,” he said. “That always helps me find a way to push through.”