Two very special people were on Paul Gulliver’s mind when he ran last week’s Chester Half Marathon .
The 37-year-old who works at Marks & Spencer’s in Chester, had never before attempted such a long distance run, and he admits the race was a ‘huge task’ for him, but knowing he was doing it for his mum Sandra who died of cancer in 2002, and a friend Sandra Hickman, who has been diagnosed with the disease, made it more than worthwhile.
Paul, who managed an impressive time of 2 hours and 10 minutes, said: “I lost my mum to cancer when she was just 58, so doing charity work has always been close to my heart. This was a really big thing for me to do as I’ve not done anything like it before. I asked my friends and work colleagues to sponsor me, and at the moment I’ve raised close to £800.
“The friend I ran for shares the same first name as my mum and she was diagnosed at the same age, so I felt with that special connection that really wanted to run for her and Macmillan to raise as much awareness of cancer as I could.
Paul added: “My friend was there to witness me cross the finish line, and presented the medal to her at the finish line, telling her it was for her. The very next day, she had to go into hospital to have some scans where the doctor’s told her she is now cancer free which was a beautiful end to the story.”
Paul has taken part in various other events for charity, including the Santa Dash in aid of Cancer Research UK, and bikeathons.