WHEN most of us reach an age milestone we either celebrate with style or hide away from the world completely.
But Lee Collier-Williams decided to use his 30th birthday as a way to give something back to a hospice that helped his terminally-ill mother-in-law in the last week of her life.
Inspired by his age, Lee, from Waterlooville, set himself the challenge of doing 30 fundraising events to raise cash for The Rowans Hospice, in Purbrook.
He said: ‘When I turned 30, I cried the day before, but then I pulled myself together and thought I’d do something good. This is my way to say thank you.’
Lee’s mother-in-law Denise Collier, from Gosport, died from cancer at the hospice in August 2015. Denise, who worked at Sainsbury’s in Broadcut Fareham for 27 years, was 69 years old.
Lee said the hospice was a backbone of support for Denise’s family, including his husband Marc.
The most challenging event so far was the Great South Run. I’m not very athletic and I still can’t believe that I have done it.Lee Collier-Williams, from Waterlooville
He said: ‘It was an emotional time but we were welcomed there 24/7. The staff and the volunteers were amazing and so welcoming. I don’t think we can ever repay them. It is an amazing place.’
Lee has completed 13 events, with five more so far planned, and he has until his next birthday – April 22 – to think up and complete the remaining 17.
Lee, a team leader at Affinion International in Portsmouth, said: ‘The most challenging event so far was the Great South Run. I’m not very athletic and I still can’t believe that I have done it. I ran it in 1hr 53 mins, which I was really proud of. The people on the streets of Portsmouth cheering me on really kept me going. It was amazing.’
Lee has already raised £1,359. To donate to his cause, go to justgiving.com/fundraising/Challenge30TRH
1) The Moonlit Memory Walk
2) Abseiled the Spinnaker Tower
3) Got a tattoo of The Rowans logo
4) Shaved his head
5) The Great South Run
6) A 5k race before the Great South Run
7) Another 5k race
8) The Rowans Ride - bike ride
9) Woofs and Wellies walk in Stansted Park with his adopted dog Lucy, who has wheels for back legs
10) The Moonlit Meander
11) Summer fete
12) Built a neighbour’s furniture
13) Snowflake Challenge at the Santa Run in Southsea – a one-mile race, followed by a 5k and a 10k
14) Race with Rowans
15) A 5k virtual race
16) GAFIRS New Year’s Day Swim 2017
17) Sky dive
18) Brighton Marathon