For the fourth year in a row, running more than 184 miles in a single week would be an accomplishment for anyone, but when discovering the reason why Eva Casale is preparing to do this, it makes it all the more impressive. Casale, who is Senior VP of Information Technology for Suffolk Federal, is using her talent to run long distances and capitalizing on her physical and mental focus by pounding the pavement a minimum of 26.2 miles each day to raise funds and awareness for a cause close to her heart – to honor our troops, our local veterans and our Fallen Heroes. “I’ve always been able to run long distances, so I decided to use my passion for running to make a difference and to do something significant – to recognize and support our veterans,” Casale explains. “Team E.V.A. is meant to pay homage to our local heroes. It’s such an honor for me to organize and run this event and to know that I can bring the surrounding communities together to thank our local heroes and their families for all they done and sacrificed.”
From April 27-May 3, Casale will lead the appropriately-named Team E.V.A. for every mile during what she calls the “Every Veteran Appreciated” Week. Each marathon Casale finishes, will be focused on honoring local servicemen killed in action and will be linked to communities they called home. At the end of the week Eva will have visited over 106 Points of Honor and will have laid more than 250 flowers in memory of our Fallen Heroes.
Sponsored by Suffolk Federal, Casale will complete a remarkable seven marathons over the span of seven days through the streets of Long Island to support services and programs for the national nonprofit Hope for The Warriors. With 10 locations and more than 60,000 members throughout Suffolk County, Suffolk Federal has been passionate about supporting and giving back to the communities it serves. “Suffolk Federal is honored to support and be the lead sponsor for Eva and her mission of bringing attention to the brave soldiers and their families who sacrificed so much, and continue to do so each and every day,” said Ralph D. Spencer Jr., President & CEO of Suffolk Federal and a United States Air Force Veteran. “As many veterans, including myself, have planted roots here in Long Island, I believe it’s our responsibility to support this crucial cause and invite our community to do so as well by coming out to support our Team E.V.A.”
For the second year, Team E.V.A. will be expanding into Nassau County. “We are inspired and excited to have Eva and her team continue their efforts in Nassau County once again. Their dedication, hard work and commitment to making such a significant contribution to our local veterans is admirable and helps to promote and unify a stronger community here on Long Island,” said Nassau County Executive Laura Curran.
Huntington Town Supervisor Chad A. Lupinacci added “Veterans and their families make the ultimate sacrifice so we can experience an abundant of freedom in this country. To support Eva and her team as they begin their journey in Huntington with this unique 184-mile platform to raise awareness, acknowledge and support our Long Island Veteran community for all they have done is an honor.”
“I want to applaud Eva and her team for continuing to help our veterans and their families,” said Legislator Susan A. Berland. “Suffolk County has the largest population of veterans in New York State and as the Chairwoman of the Legislature’s Veterans Committee, I cannot thank Eva enough. The amount of dedication and effort it takes to run one marathon, let alone seven, is remarkable. I wish Team E.V.A all the best as they take on this year’s challenge!”
To show support for our Veterans, Casale encourages all residents and businesses to proudly display American Flags during the seven-day marathon event. Live updates of Casale’s progress will be made available through Suffolk Federal’s and Team Eva’s Facebook page. To follow Eva on her journey, click the link to GLIMPSE where Eva and the Team can be tracked during the marathon each day using the hashtag #WheresEva
This year’s marathons Opening Ceremony will take place at the Huntington Elks Lodge #1565. From there the team will begin their marathons in Centerport, Commack, Northport, LI National Cemetery, Eisenhower Park, Shelter Island, Sag Harbor, Calverton, Westhampton, Oyster Bay, Bayville, Glen Cove, Brookhaven, Patchogue, Medford and Long Island’s South Shore. The Closing Ceremony will take place at Copiague Fire Department as Eva and her team complete the final marathon.
“We are grateful to be the recipient of this incredible endeavor and appreciate Eva’s gift for running and her dedication and compassion for veterans, service members and military families. Eva and Suffolk Federal’s continued support to our organization is significant to our programs focused on transition, health and wellness, peer engagement and connections to community resources,” explains Senior Director of Sports and Recreation for Hope For The Warriors Steve Bartomioli.
Join Suffolk Federal in Supporting Our Veterans through Team E.V.A.
Suffolk Federal has made a strong commitment to Team E.V.A. as this extraordinary event takes place and invites the public to join the cause. Simply visit any Suffolk Federal branch between April 1 through April 30 to donate and be part of this mission’s success. For a $5 donation, donors can take home an American Flag Pop Socket. For a $10-$20 donation, donors will receive a special Patriotic Bear (while supplies last). For a donation of their choice, a contribution card with the donor’s name will be displayed at the branch where the donation was made.
Eva is also inviting the community to join her during her marathon days. For a $50 donation, you can join her for a 5k to an 8-mile run or you can simply support her by donating any amount to the effort. For more information visit www.GoTeamEva.org.