Siblings running to keep Sean Collier’s legacy alive
BOSTON — Rob Rogers and his sister, Jenn, hit the pavement training for a 26.2-mile emotional journey with their brother, Sean Collier, in their hearts and on their minds.
They’re the founders of Team Collier Strong, and the team is training for the 2014 Boston Marathon.
“Collier Strong to me means just to be the best person that you can, live life to the fullest, push through and enjoy the people who matter most to you,” said Rob Rogers.
Jenn Rogers spoke about the emotional toll Collier’s death has had on their family.
“We have some good days and some bad days. It’s hard when you come from such a huge family and you notice the weight of one missing, especially him,” she said.
Team Collier Strong was born in the wake of tragedy after MIT Police Officer Sean Collier was shot and killed on April 18, 2013, allegedly at the hands of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects.
It’s the team’s mission to keep his legacy alive and to raise money to send one self-sponsored police recruit through the Lowell Police Academy each year. The team’s training runs bring them to the banks of the Charles River overlooking the city and close to the campus Collier loved and patrolled.
“I just want them to remember, remember his sacrifice, remember our family in their prayers,” Jenn Rogers said.
For some, the long runs are a way to cope and reflect.
Rob Rogers said he often thinks about his last conversation with his brother. When he heard about the bombs at the marathon finish line on Boylston Street he checked to see if Collier was OK.
“I just sent a text and said, ‘Are you cool?’ He said, ‘Yeah,’ and that was the last thing I said to him, and I think about what I would say now. Tell him I’m proud of him. I miss him. He was just the best guy, the best man, the best brother, the best son, he truly mean so much to so many people,” he said.
Collier always gave 100 percent and on marathon day Team Collier Strong will make him proud. The team’s rallying cry is, “How strong? Collier STRONG!” When Rob Rogers crosses the marathon finish line this year his words to his brother will be, “We did it buddy!”
All proceeds donated to Team Collier Strong’s marathon run will support the Sean Collier Self-Sponsorship Scholarship.
For more information, click here.