Framingham Resident and Leukemia Survivor to Run 2020 Boston Marathon

FRAMINGHAM – On April 19, 2001, Brian McKinney was diagnosed with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia.

On April 20, 2020, he will run the 124th Boston Marathon with the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge.

McKinney was diagnosed with cancer at just 26 years old. Now, at 45, the funeral home director has a wife and three young sons.

“We’re pretty lucky to be here, let alone to have had kids and a successful life and been as blessed as we have been,” McKinney said.

Being able to run the marathon 19 years and 1 day after his diagnosis is something pretty special.

“Now is as good a time as any to bring it back to what’s important. And the fact that we’re here and why we’re here, kind of to help the boys see what’s important too,” he said.

This is the second time the funeral home director is running the Boston Marathon for Dana-Farber. It is a cause close to home.

Not only was McKinney treated at Dana-Farber, but his wife works there and his brother worked there for a period of time.

“We’re a Dana-Farber family […] it’s a place that is pretty special to us,” McKinney said.

McKinney and his family purchased McKinney, McCarthy and Lawler Funeral Home and Cremation Services four years ago.

He, his wife, and sons made the move from West Roxbury to Framingham. Though it was a large change, he says everyone was wonderful through the process.

“Everybody’s done a great job, and thanks to the McCarthy family and everybody that was already at the funeral home, it’s been awesome.”

McKinney grew up in the funeral home business in Vermont.

After facing his own mortality at the age of 26, he now brings a unique perspective to the business.

“I think it makes me a lot more compassionate, understanding what people have been through over the months and years that they’ve been going through all this.”

According to his fundraising page, 100 percent of the money raised by the DFMC team will go to the Claudia Adams Barr Program in Innovative Basic Cancer Research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Individuals can donate to the cause by visiting McKinney’s Dana-Farber page at


Photo courtesy

Shauna Golden

Since she was little, Shauna knew that she wanted a career in a field that would allow her to practice her love of writing on a daily basis. While attending Framingham High School, Shauna took several journalism and television production classes. It was during her experience in those classes that Shauna recognized her dream of becoming a journalist one day. She graduated from Framingham High School in May 2014. Now, at 21-years-old, Shauna is a rising senior at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Conn. She is studying journalism with a minor in French language. Shauna hopes to use her passion for writing to better the world one day. She has a drive for delivering news and using all forms of journalism (print, digital, and broadcast) to deliver those stories. Shauna is expected to graduate from Quinnipiac University in December 2017. After graduation, she looks forward to entering the communications field and continuing to learn and grow both as a journalist, and as a person.

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