“Wendy went for a run a year ago and didn’t complete it. We want to change the story by continuing the run that she began.”
Today marks one year since 35-year-old runner Wendy Martinez was stabbed and killed during an evening run in her Logan Circle neighbourhood in Washington, D.C.
In the aftermath of the horrific, random attack, those closest to Martinez are doing what they can to further her message of hope through running with the Wendy Martinez Legacy Project—and this week, runners across the country are joining in to do so.
Runners all over the world are slipping on their running shoes, logging some miles in her honour, and tagging their efforts on social media with #RunforWendy to support the foundation created in her name, which will raise funds for running, technology, and community projects.
“Wendy went for a run a year ago and didn’t complete her run,” Daniel Hincapie, her fiancé who proposed six days before she died, told Runner’s World. “We want to change the story by continuing the run that she began.”
Last Friday, Anthony Crawford, 23, was sentenced to 30 years in prison after he pled guilty in June to first-degree murder for the stabbing. His sentencing provides an element of closure, Hincapie said, but it won’t bring her back or change her legacy.
“Her life will continue to illuminate other people around the world,” he said. “This week finalises that what happened a year ago is going to fail [as an intimidation tactic], and women runners of the world will continue to run.”
Running for Wendy
Born in Nicaragua in 1983, Martinez moved with her family to West Palm Beach, Florida, when she was 5 years old. She studied international affairs, served as chief of staff for Fiscal Note—a startup dedicated to making government more transparent and accountable—and was an avid runner: She and Hincapie finished their first marathon together in San Diego in 2018, and Martinez was training for Boston when she died.
It was a bucket-list race for Martinez, so Hincapie knew he had to complete her dream. Seven months after she was murdered, he ran the Boston Marathon in her honour, toting the banner, “Love wins. Wendy wins.”
The money he raised during Boston helped fund the Wendy Martinez Legacy Project, which Hincapie and friends created last year to fund three types of projects: women in technology, women’s entrepreneurship, and community engagement through running.
To mark the one-year anniversary of her death, the Legacy’s focus will be on running events—both virtual and local. Her closest friends will meet in Logan Circle for an evening run in her memory tonight, but they are also broadening her remembrance to a much larger scale, too.
As part of this week’s #RunforWendy events, runners can join the Virtual 5K. Hincapie and friends are encouraging participants across the country to share a photo of their 5K run on Facebook, Instagram, and other platforms, tagging @WendysLegacy and #LoveWins in the post.
“During the races I’ve participated in, the most beautiful part is the first stretch when everyone is together,” he said. “There’s positive energy, unity and support. We’re doing the same motion together, but we all have our own running styles.”
Runs between September 14-21 are a “love note” from the running community to Martinez and the anniversary of her passing, he added.
“Running breaks boundaries in different continents and cultures,” he said. “Runners everywhere show solidarity and support for other runners all over the world.”
Then on Saturday morning, the Wendy Martinez Legacy Project is teaming up with Pacers Running for the Clarendon Day Run in Arlington, Virginia. Runners can join Team Wendy by donating $100 through the donation page at the Greater Washington Community Foundation, and they’ll receive a free bib, an official Team Wendy shirt, and a ticket to prerace festivities. All donations will be re-invested into the greater Washington area.
“The attack happened in our nation’s capital, and we wanted the grand finale run to be in D.C.,” Hincapie said. “This is about the city—not random attackers but good people who like to practice their sport and are committed to their causes.”
“It’s been incredible to work with friends and family to get the Foundation up and running,” Hincapie said. “We want to help others feel safe and be safe while they’re running.”