16:59 Thursday 02 January 2014

Epic 2014 mile charity challenge will be legacy

Written bySARAH BOULD

TWO brothers from Burton will take part in a series of challenges to cover 2014 miles throughout 2014 in memory of their father who died from Motor Neurone Disease.

Pete and John Collins have formed Team MND, with friend Ant Oxley.

They have devised the 2014 in 2014 campaign to raise money and awareness for the Motor Neurone Disease Association, and have a target of £30,000.

Pete and John’s father Stephen died from the illness in 2008. The condition attacks the body’s nerves, weakening and destroying the network the body uses to move messages from your brain to your limbs.

Ant, from Sheffield, lost a close family friend to the condition.

Their aim is to each run and cycle 2014 miles during the course of 2014.

In tribute to his dad, John said: “The 18 months between his diagnosis and his death were tortuous.

“For a son to have to try and help his father through a life where pride and dignity are nothing but distant memories is about as tough as it gets. Where my dad used to be is a burning desire to raise money and awareness for those dealing with the condition.

“I guess it’s part of the grieving process, though it doesn’t make me miss him any less. My dad will never again tell me that he’s proud of me. Perversely, that only heightens my wish to do the things that would have made him say it.

“If I can do something that makes someone else get that lifetime though, I’ll do it.”

Events the three be completing include the Derby 10k, for which they have a team of 30 people, the Sheffield 10k, the Potters Half Marathon, the Birmingham Half-Marathon, the Robin Hood Half Marathon, the Stafford Half Marathon and the Clumber Park Duathlon.

They will also be cycling from John O’Groats to Land’s End in August, and between England’s ‘big six’ cricket grounds in July.

In June, in conjunction with Derby’s Shelton Striders Running Club, they will be attempting to complete a ‘European Marathon’ by running 45 kilometres in 24 hours, with 5k being run in nine different European countries. It is thought that this has never been done before.

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