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Bob Neil.HEIC

Bob Neil

Class of 2024

Holyoke, MA

    Bob Neil grew up in Holyoke, MA, and is a 1974 graduate of Holyoke Catholic High School.


    Following high school, Bob attended the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, graduating in 1978.  Bob is acknowledged as one of the best Marathoners in Western MA running history.


    While at Holyoke Catholic, Bob was a Three Time 3rd Place Finisher in Western Mass Cross Country Championships (1971,1972, and 1973) and he achieved All-State XC Recognition in 1973 with a 13th place finish in the state meet. He led Holyoke Catholic to the Western Mass Team Championship in both 1972 and 1973.


    While at UMass, Bob was a 4 Year Varsity Letter recipient in both cross country and track. He was part of the XC the ICAAAA Championship Teams in 1974 and 1977. In 1977, Bob qualified for the NCAA Division 1 Cross Country Championships. He achieved All New England in Track & Field in the 6 mile in both 1975 and 1978.


    After graduating from UMass, Bob continued to run and race. He achieved National Rank as a US Marathoner for years in the late 70s through the 1980’s. Bob finished 2nd in his inaugural Marathon in Minnesota - Twin Cities Marathon in 1979, with a time of 2:20. This qualified him for the 1980 US Olympic Trials, where he finished 71st with a time of 2:21. His best marathon time of 2:18, was run at the 1981 New York City Marathon. Here, he finished 40th Overall and 12th American in the field.


    Bob was self-coached after graduating from UMass and competed for Greater Boston Track Club and the Greater Springfield Harriers. Bob continues to compete in road races and for the past 15 years, he has been a coach and mentor to countless student athletes, helping them navigate the college recruiting process.


    Bob and his wife Mary, live in Longmeadow, MA., where they raised 4 children who were accomplished Student/Athletes in their own right. They also have 3 grandchildren, which helps keep Bob in shape!

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