FOR Melanie Jewett representing Great Britain in the international Deaflympics is a great honour.
The 41-year old runner secured a bronze medal in the marathon, and then followed that up nine days later with sixth place in the 10,000m, despite the searing 40 degree heat.
Melanie, a process coordinator for IBM, in North Harbour, Portsmouth, is currently taking part in the games being held in Sofia, Bulgaria.
The Deaflympics are held every four years and they have been going since 1924. Competitors come from all around the world to take part.
Last time, more than 4,000 deaf athletes and officials from 77 nations participated in the Games.
Melanie, who is profoundly deaf and communicates through lip reading, ran the marathon, which was held in Fussen, Germany,.
Her time of 3.23.54 secured team GB its first medal of the games and also beat Melanie’s personal best.
She then ran the 10,000m in Sofia, in 43.02.78, coming in sixth position.
The 10,000m saw many opponents drop out due to the incredibly high temperatures.
She also faced the challenge of finding last minute kit to run in as her bag containing her sports wear was lost when she travelled from the marathon in Germany back to the UK, before heading out to Sofia to join the rest of the team.
Melanie’s husband Michael Jewett, 41, said: ‘It was an interesting 24 hours to say the least. Despite that she did amazingly well.
‘The marathon was a good event, one of the other women gave her a run for her money. She came sixth in the 10,000m which was amazing, given she only ran the marathon less than 10 days before.
‘Also the conditions were crazy - 40 degree heat, which resulted in three runners who could not finish the race and needing medical assistance.’
Melanie said: ‘I’m so proud to represent my country. Being deaf has given me the opportunity to represent my country and that’s something I thoroughly enjoy doing. To be involved with Team GB is another reason I feel so honoured and proud to be involved.’
Melanie will now continue training for her place in the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio.