A Doncaster dad completed 64 marathons raising nearly £50,000 for a children’s charity after his teenage daughter died of cancer.
Determined Fred Tomlinson, aged 67, from Hatfield raised a staggering £49,688 for Rainbow Trust, which supports families who have a child with a life threatening or terminal illness.
Since Claire died 29 years ago, aged 15, Fred has run 64 marathons, including 24 consecutive London marathons in aid of the charity, after first hearing about it in a magazine.
He said: “There was nothing like Rainbow Trust when my daughter Claire was ill. We relied on relatives, neighbours and friends. It’s vital. There are times where there’s absolutely nowhere you can turn to and you need organisations like Rainbow Trust you really do.”
Rainbow Trust offers emotional and practical support for the whole family; from their child’s diagnosis, during treatment and, if needed, through bereavement and beyond.
Fred has run his marathon’s in a range of costumes including Rainbow Trust’s mascot Bungle, a duck and even in his old police officer uniform.
He said: “The kids absolutely love the costumes. If you are dressed up you get more money.
“I run at a steady pace and collect money as I go round. It’s not a problem in the Bungle suit.”
Fred has also completed marathons in Hannover in Germany, York and Manchester.
Memories of his daughter and knowing that he is running to help other seriously ill children spur Fred on.
His other daughter Laura, 34 and his son Paul, 41 have also run in aid of Rainbow Trust.
He said: “I know I could pull out of a race at any time but these children having treatment can’t have a day off. When I start a race, I’m going to finish it.
“I would just encourage everybody to volunteer their time for Rainbow Trust. It makes such a difference.
“I hope Claire would be proud of me.”
Emma Haines, Director of Marketing and fundraising at Rainbow Trust, said: “Fred’s support as a volunteer fundraiser for Rainbow Trust is absolutely incredible. Raising almost £50,000 is enough for us to support 30 families with a terminally ill child for a whole year.
If anyone is interested in volunteering with Rainbow Trust, please call Andrea Kelley, volunteer manager on 01372 220043.