Father of Conrad Roy III running Boston Marathon for suicide awareness

BOSTON -- The father of a teen whose suicide was the basis for the texting-suicide trial is now running the Boston Marathon in honor of his son.

Conrad Roy III's father, Conrad Roy Jr., is raising money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Roy Jr. says his son was wearing a Boston Strong shirt when he died, that shirt has now inspired him to run.

“I know he’s watching, I know he’s watching everything,” Roy Jr. said. “He knows I’m proud of him he knows that I love him there’s no question about it.”

Last year, Judge Lawrence Moniz found Michelle Carter guilty of involuntary manslaughter after she sent texts to Conrad encouraging him to take his life. Carter is appealing that decision.

“I have no control over it, I try to let it go and can’t let it control my life,” Roy Jr. said.

Running has helped the father reach that realization. Through challenging himself with half marathons in his pursuit to push forward, Roy Jr. has lost 50 pounds and gained a source of solace that allows him to connect with the son he lost.

“Some days I feel light as a feather I feel like he’s right there and I feel something inside of me it makes me feel like he’s right there,” he said.

Before he began training, the tugboat captain said he couldn’t even finish a half mile. But once he started running, he didn’t want to stop. Roy Jr. even went as far as installing a treadmill on his boat so he can stay at it while out at sea.

“I never thought I’d be able to run more than three miles,” he said.

But in less than three weeks, he will put himself to the ultimate test. By crossing the finish line, he’s hoping he will reach others with a message he was not able to get through to the son he misses every day.

“There’s going to be tough times everyone has tough times in your life but you’re going to be able to get through it there’s definitely hope you might feel so bad one day. I believe it’s going to stop you’ve got to push through it get through the challenge it’s going to be okay,” he said.

As of Wednesday night, $11,000 of Roy Jr.'s the $25,000 goal has been raised. To donate, click here.

If you are in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741.

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