HIS father’s courage has inspired Dan Waldren to take part in a marathon.
The 32-year-old is taking part in today’s 26-mile London Marathon for his dad Nick, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis 14 years ago.
The schoolteacher from Milton is lacing up his running shoes for the race and will be raising money for charity MS-UK.
Dan said: ‘MS has had a massive impact on my family.
‘Until my dad was diagnosed with MS he was a very active and healthy father.
‘He was very keen on DIY and enjoyed going out fishing in his dinghy at weekends.
‘After being diagnosed, he suddenly became unable to do many of the things he used to enjoy. He had to retire from work and his whole life was turned completely upside down.
‘Now, 14 years on from his initial diagnosis, dad is reliant on others for the most basic of everyday tasks. My mum has become my dad’s main carer as well as wife, and over the years this has put a lot of stress on her own life.
‘Never once through all of this however has my dad complained. He meets every obstacle with steely determination and the famous sense of humour that he has always been known for.
‘Thanks to the support my dad has received from not only my mother but from the entire family, my dad manages to lead as normal a life as possible.
‘He still manages to get to Fratton Park for every home game and he doesn’t even moan about that.’
Dan felt the urge to run after being inspired by his father’s courage.
He added: ‘It’s my dad’s amazing courage through his illness that has inspired me to take on the marathon and to raise money for MS-UK. It is my way of saying how proud I am to be his son.’
Around 36,000 people are running today’s marathon in the capital.
And keen runner ‘Touchline’ Tony Male from Fratton Park is competing for the 14th time. He will be joined by friend and manager of Havant and Waterlooville, Lee Bradbury, who is running for the second time.
The pair are raising money for Children with Cancer UK and have already reached their target of £2,000.