ellenor, the charity that supports families facing terminal illness, has nine plucky supporters running in the Virgin Money London Marathon 2017 on Sunday 23 April on its behalf: Sue Savin, Wayne Du Plessis, Faye Stapleton, Amy Savill, Tina Butler, Megan Prigmore, Kevin Denny, Maciej Kopec and Sagi Burton.
Like many people undertaking a challenge, some of these runners have been inspired to take part by someone special. Sue Savin from Erith, for example, is running in memory of her mother, Linda Brooks, who was cared for by ellenor.
“My mum devastatingly passed away from cancer in June 2015 and spent the final days of her life at ellenor Gravesend,” says Sue. “The staff there were absolutely wonderful and took such great care of Mum. Even when she was no longer able to comprehend what was going on, they were gentle, tender and loving.”
Sue continues: “To the ellenor team, Mum wasn't just another patient; she was Linda, a lovely lady who deserved the very best care, and their compassion meant so much to me and my family. They treated her with the utmost dignity and respect, and to see them care for her like that was truly comforting to us in those dark days. They were also a tower of strength to us during Mum's time there and afterwards. I cannot stress how remarkable, understanding and caring the staff at ellenor are.”
Sue was originally meant to run in the Brighton Marathon last year, but had to pull out with five weeks to go, due to injury and illness.
“I was absolutely gutted, having trained so hard and then having to stop running completely,” Sue explains. “I was therefore over the moon to be allocated a London place this year and so, once my injury had been treated, my training began again.”
“I won't lie, it's been very challenging - the toughest thing I've ever done physically as well as mentally, but I'm determined to cross that finish line. The time and energy I've put into this is still nothing compared with the extraordinary job that the ellenor staff do on a daily basis and if I can give the charity some much needed funds by doing this, then it's all been worth it.”
You can sponsor Sue here:
If the idea of a marathon appeals to you, but you’re not sure about running 26 miles – why not sign up for ellenor’s Walkathon on Sunday 2 July? This gives supporters the exciting opportunity to walk the 26 miles from London’s Tower Bridge back to ellenor Gravesend. Visit www.ellenor.org/events for more information.