Elizabeth Trask won’t ever be confused with an elite runner, finishing her last marathon in her typical 5 1/2 hours.
But the recent Massachusetts School of Law grad is attempting to win a different race, one which she is far from finishing.
Trask, whose friends call her “Liz,” completed her 25th marathon in four years in late October — the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C.
She’s halfway toward her goal of 50 marathons in 50 states.
“The toughest part is organizing and figuring out the details,” said the 26-year-old Andover resident.
What led her on this long journey?
Her love for her father, Bill Trask, who passed away when she was 19.
“We were best friends,” said Trask. “I did a lot of traveling with my dad while growing up (in Portland, Maine). We would come down to Boston for Red Sox and Bruins games. I had so much fun with my dad. We had planned other trips, too.”
At 51, her dad died unexpectedly after a heart attack.
“I was in a fog for a while after he died,” recalled Trask. “It was really hard.”
It was at a support group in her native Portland, with other people that had lost a loved one, that became a turning point for Trask. At one meeting, a 3-year-old girl, who had lost her father, was sitting next to her.
“I see this little boy and one of his parents is gone and he’s only three,” said Trask. “It was a turning point for me. I was still very sad he was gone and at times I still am. But it got me thinking about how grateful I was to have had 20 years with my dad.”
So in 2008 Trask decided she wanted to do something in her memory of her dad. She decided to run the Mount Desert Marathon in Southwest Harbor, Maine. This particular race was special because the house her dad grew up in was at the 26th mile mark of the race.