Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Race Reflections: Ana Marquez-Greene

I chose the ShamRock and Roll for Ana for a reason.  She was born to parents who are deeply connected to the music scene and, from what I have read and seen in video clips, Ana seemed to have been given the gift of music directly through her DNA.  I've seen video's of her singing that will dissolve you into a million pieces.  So pure and so joyful.  The love of music just seeps out of her and it's impossible to miss. 

But what I didn't know when I signed up for this race, which was based out of New Haven, CT, was that Ana's father apparently spent quite a good deal of time playing music in the areas clubs.  That was a happy coincidence for me to discover on Sunday.  I felt like it was a tribute to her father and her all at the same time.

When I look at Ana pictures, it's impossible to comprehend that she's gone.  Her spirit and personality literally jump off the page when I see her.  That beautiful hair, gorgeous smile, and a personality that you can just sense through looking at her eyes.  It makes me sad that I didn't know her.  Like I have missed out on an incredible honor. 

As a Newtown resident, I find it really hard to not think about the fact that there is a very good chance that I passed one of these children in town at some point.  Ana could have been in the line over from me at the grocery store one day, just waiting in line with her mother.  Jack could have been playing baseball at the fields in Fairfield Hills where I've walked my dog a million times and where I always stop off to watch the game for a few minutes before continuing on.  So close, yet so far.  Whether we know it or not, all of our lives are intertwined in some way or another.  We all impact each other directly or indirectly.  And one of the legacy's that these 26 beautiful people are going to leave behind is that we all will stop for a moment when we are tempted to be short tempered to a stranger.  Take that extra second to realize that every person we meet is fighting their own private battle.  And take a note from Ana to allow time in life to appreciate the music of the world around us. 

A small example of yet another way these loved one's will never be forgotten is that I will never be able to look at my Kindle again without thinking of Ana.  I read that her mother had bought her a Kindle the day before the shooting.  It was the thing that Ana wanted most for Christmas.  Every time I pick up my e-reader, I will think of Ana.  I will think of that personality that burst off the page.  And I will feel a twinge of regret that I never was privileged enough to see that spark in person. 

I'm emotional thinking about this little girl.  Do me a favor and listen to your favorite song today and sing it out loud at the top of your lungs in her honor.  If she were here, I bet she would be doing something just like that.


This is Ana.  The fifth angel that I have now run for.

Full race album available on the facebook page: 26 in 2013 for Sandy Hook.


  1. I just wanted to tell you how much I love your blog. It really touches me and I love that we get a little moment to focus on each of these beautiful kids. Every post of yours speaks to me in a special way. I will never look at Daniel's adorable school photo the same way and I will never be able to see my daughter's kindle in the same way -- it was also the thing she wanted most this Christmas.

    I just wanted to thank you. I really appreciate what you're doing and how you're sharing it with all of us.

    You are Newtown.

  2. I agree with what the previous person wrote, so well said. You have such a gift for putting very powerful, emotional and difficult feelings into words and sharing a little piece of each person's life that your readers can hold on to, to honor those lost, and it is a gift to those of us following your effort to be able to share in these thoughts with you through your blog. This was a wonderful reflection on Ana. Thank you for creating this effort. See you on the trail. - Beth McGuire

  3. Oh wow. I'm so touched. Thank you so much, both of you, for your kind words. I never thought in a million years, that this project would get the kind of response that it has. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your words mean the world to me.

  4. I agree, you have such a way of making me feel connected not only to Newtown, but to each of the people you have run for. Reading your posts always brings a tear to my eye, but a smile to my face.

    Thank you, for not letting these little ones, (or their brave school caretakers) die in vain.