Gary and Laurie Rairdon prepare to start the 2016 Westbrook Strong 5K in memory of their son, Matthew Rairdon ’13.
On a beautiful Saturday in mid-July, 445 people gathered in downtown Westbrook to run, walk, or jog in memory of SJC alumnus Matthew Rairdon. Matthew’s life ended tragically in 2013, the year he graduated from the nursing program at Saint Joseph’s and began working in the ER at Mercy Hospital in Portland. To honor Matthew and his passion for nursing, his family established the Westbrook Strong 5K, a fundraiser for the Matthew Rairdon ’13 Memorial Scholarship.
This year, the third annual 5K event raised about $17,000 to support the
endowed scholarship, which recognizes an SJC nursing student from Maine. Among the registrants were more than 33 SJC participants. At the conclusion of the event, SJC staff member Liz Schran announced that a former faculty member had directed a bequest to the Rairdon Scholarship, and that an anonymous donor has promised to underwrite the cost of making the Westbrook Strong 5K an official race, which will draw even more running enthusiasts.
To date, the endowment has grown to over $70,000, ensuring that Matt’s legacy will live on.