Raytheon, a global leader in defense technology, is encouraging employees to step up to the plate this summer and support the critical mission of Home Base. To date, more than 150 Raytheon employees — many of whom are veterans themselves — have joined “Team Raytheon” and will be participating in the 2018 Run to Home Base presented by New Balance on July 28.
The Run is the largest fundraising event for Home Base: a 9K run/5K walk around Boston that starts and ends inside Fenway Park. Participants raise funds in exchange for the unique opportunity to cross home plate — funds that enable Home Base to provide clinical care, wellness programs, education and research at no cost to veterans and military families.
Meet some of the employees who are personally committed to participating in this year’s run and to showing our service members they can count on Raytheon both on and off the battlefield.
Mike O’Sullivan, Jr. is a subcontract program manager for Raytheon’s Patriot air and missile defense program and a Navy veteran. Service is in his blood with three generations of family ties to the Navy — including more than ten family members currently serving. His mother, a Navy Commander who recruited in the Boston area, was an integral part of the University of Massachusetts Boston Veterans Upward Bound program and an advocate for veterans her entire life. She passed away from ovarian cancer in 2013, and O’Sullivan is dedicating his Run to Home Base fundraising efforts to her honor.
When asked what he would say to someone who is considering participating in the Run to Home Base, O’Sullivan was quick to respond. “I feel fortunate to be a veteran in an era when there is a lot of support. I get a lot of praise and am therefore very proud to be a veteran.”
“It’s a good measure of society – and a nation at large – to take care of their veterans,” he added. “But there are veterans that could use proactive support – beyond just saying thank you.”
For O’Sullivan, participating in the Run to Home Base is a way to continue his mother’s legacy of going beyond saying “thank you” to those who served. His entire family will be there to cheer him on as he sets foot on the field at Fenway Park for the very first time and crosses home plate to support our veterans and their families.
Kelly Cozzens has been with Raytheon for more than ten years, working as a global trade manager.
Cozzens first learned about the Run to Home Base after a friend ran in 2017, but she became personally interested in participating after attending a “Run to Home Base” rally Raytheon held earlier this year. It was there she learned more about the event and Home Base’s critical mission to heal the invisible wounds of war.
Cozzens has already raised more than $1,500 – surpassing her initial goal by $520 – but is determined to raise even more for the cause.
When asked about the Run to Home Base slogan, “Who Do You Run For,” Cozzens discussed the importance of giving back to those who have served.
“I work alongside a lot of veterans, and I believe in the importance of the program and the cause,” she said.
“I’m running for veterans AND their families,” she continued. “It’s important to make sure our veterans are well supported when they come back into the civilian world.”
Cozzens looks forward to crossing home plate alongside many of her colleagues this July.
To learn more about Team Raytheon, please visit http://www.runtohomebase.org/2018RuntoHomeBase/Raytheon. To date, the team has raised more than $25,000 in support of Home Base and the veterans, service members and family members the program serves.