RUNNING man Paul O’Boyle received a hero’s welcome after completing 27 marathons in 26 days in aid of a Christchurch hospice.
Paul (56) started his challenge on 1st October and ran a marathon every day to raise funds for the Macmillan Unit at Christchurch Hospital, writes Andrew Goldman.
Money raised will help to replace the current, outdated hospice with a more modern and well-equipped facility.
Paul said: “It has been hard, but absolutely incredible. At some points I really worried I was going to get an injury. Other days when the weather was particularly bad it was really tough going and I felt exhausted. Now I’m just absolutely relieved and thankful to have got through it!”
On the last day of his challenge Paul ran not one, but two marathons, enjoying a grand finish at the hospice and bringing his total distance to 702 miles.
He continued: “I’ve had such amazing support throughout from my friends and everyone at the unit and I’ve watched my sponsorship climb from a few pounds at the beginning to now £7,000. I just want to get to £10,000 and I’ll be on cloud nine.”
Not long after his comments, the total hit £10,000 and is now more than £11k.
The Macmillan Unit provides palliative care and support for over 1,600 people and their families every year.
Father-of-one Paul, a Bournemouth school caretaker, is no stranger to showing feats of strength. He recovered from fractures to his skull, ribs and collarbone after being knocked off his bike by a drink-driver in July 2015.
Neal Williams, trust secretary of Macmillan Caring Locally, said: “We now call Paul the Marathon Man and even that doesn’t do justice to what he has achieved.
“To overcome what he has and go on to conquer such challenges is nothing short of incredible and following his journey each day has been both thrilling and humbling for us all.”
Donate at www.justgiving.com/campaign/MarathonMan