Erick Rosales started running back in 2008. If it wasn’t for the combined efforts of a customer and a sporting goods store clerk he might never have taken up the hobby.
Erick has been employed as a UPS driver for the past 26 years. During Christmas in 2007 Rosales was presented with a gift card to Sports Authority by one of his customers. Erick thanked the customer for his generosity and eventually headed to Sports Authority to see what he could find.
Erick entered the store without the slightest idea of what he would purchase. As he tells it, “I first looked at the golf stuff. I thought to myself that was too much of a rich man's sport so I moved on. I then looked down the baseball and basketball aisles. Team sports, not for me. Finally I spoke to a sales person, and he asked if I ever ran. Maybe a new pair of sneakers? Well, he talked me into it, and I started to run.”
Erick put the sneakers to good use by running during his lunch hour. Rosales recalls that he used to eat, change in the truck and spend the rest of his time running. He felt the daily lunch runs were great to both keep him fit and mentally sharp for the rest of his day.
Erick eventually decided to take the plunge and run an organized race. Unlike many novice runners who go the 5K route to start Erick began his competitive career by going full bore and entering the Long Island Half Marathon. The rest is history, and he has never looked back.
Erick has competed in 10 marathons including the NYC Marathon 3 times. When management from UPS asked for a runner to join Team Mission United, it came down to himself or his good friend Bill Ude. Rosales told Bill, the newer runner of the two, to take advantage of the opportunity and gave up his potential spot. When by chance Ude found out that he earned a lottery spot in the marathon he told Erick that the both of them could now run.
Erick is delighted to run on behalf of Mission United. He is a dedicated UPS driver and knows how hard the company and his fellow employees work to support United Way of Long Island programs. When he found out about Mission United it only increased his commitment to do well. Erick said, “It’s a great opportunity to give back and do my part for veterans. They sacrificed so much to give us our freedom. We should honor all veterans whenever we have the chance. Compared to what they have done for us the effort by me is just a drop in the bucket. I’m 100% in.”
Kevin Gates, Suffolk Hub Division Manager for UPS, is pleased that both Erick and Bill will be running to support Mission United. He commented, “As a Contributing Sponsor of the NYC Marathon, we are proud to have two exceptional runners representing us to benefit Mission United. We have a deep commitment to the mission of United Way of Long Island and I can think of no better two employees to represent us.”
Not only is Erick excited to be running on behalf of Mission United to bring both increased funding and awareness to the program, but is happy he will be joined in the race by his good friend and training partner Bill Ude.