Teaneck—On November 3, 2013, close to 50,000 athletes will take to the pavement to run in the annual New York City Marathon. Each runner has an internal fire and cause behind his participation in the 26.2 mile, five-borough race. Meylekh Viswanth and Jason Kesler will be representing Bergen County and competing on Team One Family. The One Family Fund supports victims of terrorists in Israel.
Meylekh Viswanth, a finance professor at Pace University, has been a runner since he was a teenager. He started out running “barefoot” on the streets of Mumbai, India and later Chicago, but now only races with shoes on. This year will be his tenth marathon, but his first in New York. He told the JLBC that two things initially impressed him about One Family Fund. First, the organization does not discriminate based on religion when it comes to helping victims of terror in Israel. Second, such a large percent of the money raised goes to help the victims (over 77 percent).
In 2010, Kesler decided his goal was to work himself into shape, not just any shape, but tri-athlete shape. Kesler told the JLBC that he trained with Team One Family and “raising money for One Family made finishing my first race a much more rewarding experience than I could have ever imagined.” Since that first race Kesler has competed in many triathlons, but this week will be his first full-distance marathon.
Many organizations collect money for victims of terror. One Family collects money, and also offers human resources and support groups, bringing together people who have suffered through terror attacks, along with caring people who thankfully haven’t. They connect people in Israel with people in almost every country around the world. One Family Fund works directly with the families, every day of the year, responding to their needs, just as any loving family member would.