Keen runners turn out for Team Verrico half marathon and fun run

Gill Hoole
Gill Hoole

Stepping out in the name of charity were keen runners on Sunday as they took part in the Team Verrico Isle of Axholme Half Marathon.

The event, which started and finished in Epworth Market Place, saw hundreds of people turn out in force, both competing and cheering on. The day also included a fun run too.

For those who are unfamiliar with the Verrico story - Anna was a young mum of two children who was diagnosed with an early stage breast cancer.

She had a mastectomy and six rounds of chemo. In the middle of the chemotherapy, she decided to run the Isle of Axholme half marathon with family and friends to raise funds to support a researcher into triple negative cancer at the University of Sheffield.

Whilst in remission and training at the ten mile level, she felt a tightening in her chest and believed she had pneumonia.

She carried on preparations and then, two weeks before the event in September 2013, she received the horrific news that the cancer had never actually left, it was in her lungs and she was terminally ill.

In typical Anna spirit she felt obligated to fulfil her pledge; the organisers - Cheryl and Julian Moorhouse - put on a special loop of the town centre especially for her (which became the fun run) and all of the Verrico friends and family turned out in pink to salute the bravery of this remarkable woman.

Anna died just ten weeks later.

Anna’s widow, Paul, took up the baton and the Team Verrico charity was born as her legacy. Now three years old, over £350,000 has been raised in Anna’s name to help families where a parent has cancer.

Paul said: “This is our signature event, a huge personal challenge but with the roar of the Epworth home crowd coming together to salute the bravery of the charity’s founder - a girl who lives on in the memories of a life lived and is expounded in the toil and success of a race well run.”