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Lymington triathletes' race in memory of former club captain Neil Carden

A TEAM of Lymington athletes are raising cash for Southampton General Hospital in memory of their former club captain who died after coming off his bike last year.

Members of Lymington Triathlon Club are taking part in the hospital charity's Race for a Million challenge to raise money for new facilities at the intensive care unit, where club captain Neil Carden was treated following a devastating cycling accident.

As previously reported, Neil was out on a Wednesday night club ride with four friends last October when his bike hit a pothole near Ashurst.

He came off his bike, hitting his head, and despite wearing a helmet was knocked unconscious. An ambulance was called and Neil was immediately transferred to the Neurological Intensive Care Unit in University Hospital Southampton for specialist treatment. Tragically, he never recovered, and died just four days later.

Neil Carden with wife Clare and children Bethan and Chris
Neil Carden with wife Clare and children Bethan and Chris

In the aftermath of his death, his widow Clare and children Bethan and Chris asked friends to donate towards the refurbishment of the hospital’s neuro ICU family waiting room. The donations totalled more than £6,000.

Now members of Lymington Triathlon Club have pledged to continue raising money in Neil’s memory.

Lymington Triathlon Club chair, Antonia Cox, said: “Neil had been a member of our club since 2016, and we have been absolutely devastated by his loss. We cannot believe he is no longer here to bound along at the front of our running group, or to share that all important coffee and chat on a bike ride.

“After his death, we held a torchlit walk and run on the salt marshes, which had a huge turnout. We knew we wanted to do more to remember him, so some of the club have signed up to Southampton Hospitals Charity Race for a Million virtual triathlon.

"As his wife Clare said when he died, 'Keep putting on your running shoes, getting on your bike and swimming every day that you can. Don’t waste a moment'.

“Neil was a true team player and always joined in with gusto with everything the club did, and we know he would have loved to be a part of this.”

To support the club, visit www.justgiving.com/team/ltcmillion

There is still time to sign up to the Race for a Million virtual triathlon, which can be completed any time in May. It gives participants three options, ranging from a 150m swim, 2km cycle or 1.2k run up to a 1500m swim, 40km cycle and 10km run. To find out more, visit www.raceforamillion.co.uk

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