Seven Abington-area runners recently participated in the 2013 INC New York City Marathon. While the demanding distance is physically and mentally taxing, the runners are motivated because they are running for a special cause.

Corey Burns of Factoryville, Justin Davis of Clarks Green, Cathy Guzzi of Dalton, Lisa Harris of Clarks Green, Diana Pope-Albright of Waverly, Mark Ross of Clarks Summit and Susan Steinbach of Clarks Green were part of a 50-member “Ryan’s Run” team, which ran to support the programs of Allied Services, many of which are focused on children and adults with disabilities. The 2013 Marathon marks the fourth consecutive year a Ryan’s Run team has been assembled to participate in this event. “Ryan’s Run” is led by WNEP-TV personality Ryan Leckey.

During the first three years of the Ryan’s Run campaign, more than $500,000 was raised for Allied Services. Funds raised during the 2011 campaign enabled Allied Services to invest in two Aretech Zero-Gs, which are advanced gait and balance training systems used to help patients recovering from stroke, brain injury, spinal cord injury and other neurological conditions to begin standing and walking earlier in their rehabilitation.

Cathy Guzzi, who works as a director of outpatient physical therapy at Allied Services, explained why she participated in this year’s event.

“To know that through my training I will be fundraising for equipment and technology that will help patients is a wonderful feeling,” she said. “Knowing that running the marathon helps others is a big motivational factor for me.”

Besides Guzzi, team members Diane Pope and Susan Steinbach also work for Allied Services.

Team member Mark Ross, a partner at the accounting and consulting firm of ParenteBeard, one of the seven sponsors for this year’s Ryan’s Run team, agreed with Guzzi.

“ParenteBeard is honored to be part of this effort to raise money to support the many programs that Allied Services offers to the residents of Northeastern Pennsylvania,” he said. “The training for a marathon is certainly a significant commitment. But, knowing that the training will benefit Allied Services is what kept me focused on the ultimate goal — running 26.2 miles.”

Lisa Harris, who teaches Spanish at Holy Cross High School in Dunmore, explained that she participates in honor of those who can’t for whatever reason.

“I think part of why I love running for a cause is because I am able bodied, and I can do it for others who aren’t able to run, or who aren’t as fortunate as me,” she said.

Rounding out the team, Corey Burns works as an assistant chief photographer at WNEP-TV and Justin Davis works as a sales representative for Boston Scientific.

After being successful in its first year and raising $120,000, Ryan’s Run was moved up to “Bronze Charity” status by marathon organizers. In 2010, the first year of the campaign, five people ran on the Ryan’s Run team, this year, 50 runners trained to run as part of the team.

For more information about Ryan’s Run, or to participate next year, visit