WOONSOCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — It’s been quite a week for Steven Blais.
The Woonsocket native crossed a major goal off of his bucket list last weekend by running in the TCS London Marathon.
“It was one of the most spectacular things I’ve ever had the chance to do,” Blais said.
Blais, an avid runner, participated in the annual road race on behalf of the Alzheimer’s Society — a cause that’s close to his heart.
“On the back of my heel, for every single race, I write my mom’s name,” Blais said. “She passed away about five years ago.”
Blais lost not only his mother to the disease, but also both of his grandmothers and several of his aunts and uncles.
“This was a tough one,” Blais recalled. “As I’m crossing the finish line, I pointed up at the sky and I just said ‘mom, we did it.'”
“Helping to find a cure for the disease is always my primary objective, but it’s also to honor my mom’s legacy,” he continued.
Had he not flown across the pond, Blais would have participated in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s at Roger Williams Park.
Even though he roughly 3,500 miles away from home, Blais said he felt more connected to the cause than ever.
“They were all out walking to help find a cure for Alzheimer’s and I was running for the exact same reason,” he said.
Blais doesn’t plan on slowing down anytime soon.
“Five weeks from now I’ll be running in the New York City Marathon as well, because why not?” Blais said.
“I feel like I’ve taken every opportunity to live life to the fullest,” he continued. “I know it’s fleeting and I know Alzheimer’s is so rampant in my family that it could just happen [to me], so I want to make the memories I can now, celebrate them with the people I love and live the best life humanly possible.”
Blais had the opportunity to relive one of those memories last Friday, when Hocus Pocus 2 was released on Disney+.
The 43-year-old was cast as an extra in the highly-anticipated sequel to the 1993 comedy, which was filmed entirely in Rhode Island.
In the movie, Blais wore a devil’s costume and eating a candied apple during the Salem Scare Fest.
“It was kind of serendipitous,” he recalled. “My friends and I, sort of as a goof, decided to fill out the casting form to be extras. Then a few weeks later, they called me up and wanted me to be a featured role.”
Blais said it was an experience he will never forget.
“It was so much fun,” Blais said. “I just love how many people are happy because of this film, and to be a small piece of that is amazing.”
Johnny Villella contributed to this report.