[A] local couple are currently preparing for the world’s largest half marathon this Sunday to raise awareness and fundraise for the Motor Neurone Disease Association in honour of Tony Thompson from Portinscale who is living with Motor Neurone Disease.
Tony’s daughter and son-in-law, Sarah and Tom Mellodew, from Keswick, are running the Great North Run on Sunday 10th September to fundraise for the Motor Neurone Disease Association in honour of Sarah’s dad – 59 year old Tony Thompson from Portinscale – who is currently living with and battling the disease.
Former teacher Tony was a well-known paraglider in the Lake District, and a member of Cumbria Soaring Club, before his Motor Neurone Disease was
diagnosed last December. He is now confined to a wheelchair and needs assistance to move, eat and uses a computer to help him speak.
Sarah said: “It’s horrible seeing my dad suffer, unable to do all the simple things we take for granted, like talk, eat, and move, and it seems especially unfair when he’s been so fit and active all his life.
“Running the Great North Run is just a small thing we can do to try and raise awareness and fundraise for the Motor Neurone Disease Association,
in honour of my amazing dad who is being so brave in his fight against this horrific disease.
“This run is nothing compared to the charity paraglide off Skiddaw, that my dad is planning on doing as soon as weather permits (hopefully later this month), however, it’s something we can do personally to help his fantastic cause.”
Tom, who runs Keswick-based wireless internet specialists, Derwent Digital and Wireless, said: “This is going to be really difficult for me as I’m so unfit at the moment, however, I’m determined, as it’s the least I can do to support such a worthy cause.
“We managed to get a last minute place in the race, so we’ve not had long to train and it hasn’t been easy, however, we’ll try our best!
“Every pound that goes towards this worthy charity is money well spent. Please sponsor us at: www.justgiving.com/teamtonyt.”
To keep up-to-date with Tony’s plans for his paraglide, visit: www.justgiving.com/flytt.
Motor Neurone Disease is a fatal, rapidly progressing disease that affects the brain and spinal cord, attacking the nerves that control movement so muscles no longer work. It kills a third of people within a year and more than half within two years of diagnosis
It’s a devastating disease that affects up to 5,000 adults in the UK at any one time and kills six people every day. There is no cure.
The MND Association is the only national charity in England, Wales and Northern Ireland focused on MND care, research and campaigning.
Denise Davies, Head of Community Fundraising at the MND Association, said: “Without the amazing support of people like Sarah, Tom and Tony, the MND Association simply would not be able to provide it’s vital support services, fund research to find a cure and campaign and raise awareness of MND. Together we are making a real difference for people affected by this devastating disease.”