Photo inspires man to run for CLIC Sargent in memory of friend
Dave Barker has signed up to take part in the 2016 Windsor Half Marathon to support children and young people’s cancer support charity CLIC Sargent. Dave, 44, took part in the event in 2015 to mark the 20th anniversary of his first run in Windsor Great Park, when he took part as a guide runner with his blind friend Peter Young.
Aged 17, Dave was a high level athlete struggling to train on his own when he met his training partner Peter Young. Peter was a world class Nordic Skier, a winter Olympic skier and had represented Great Britain in the summer games too. Peter was also blind; losing his sight aged 2 after suffering from a rare form of eye cancer called Retinoblastoma.
An ankle injury put an end to Dave’s ambitions of being a world-class athlete and so he channelled all his efforts into supporting Peter, who was competing in the Nagano Olympics in Japan in 1994. At age 38, Pete should have been past his peak in athletics terms – however he came back a double medallist!
A year later, in 1995, Dave and Peter took part in the Windsor Half Marathon together. They remained firm friends for the following years.
Sadly, in 2001, Peter was diagnosed with cancer in his calf which later spread to his lung and brain. He passed away on 12 July 2002. The day before he died, Peter’s last words to Dave were: “Don’t worry, boy. I’ll kick this and we’ll do Windsor next year.”
After Peter’s death, Dave lost his motivation for running, feeling that part of him had died too. But, last year, after spotting a picture of himself and Peter taking part in the Windsor Half Marathon in 1995, Dave decided to mark the 20th anniversary by signing up for the Windsor Half Marathon again. He raised over £700 for CLIC Sargent, the UK’s leading cancer charity for children and young people, and their families.
Now, Dave has already secured his place in the 2016 Windsor Half Marathon and will again be raising money for CLIC Sargent. The money raised by Dave will support children and young people with cancer, and their families by providing clinical, practical and emotional support to help them cope with cancer and get the most out of life.
The 2016 Windsor Half Marathon takes place on Sunday 25th September and is set in stunning surroundings, featuring one of the most picturesque courses in the world with amazing views of Windsor Castle and across Windsor Great Park.
CLIC Sargent is the Platinum Charity Partner for the Windsor Half Marathon, please visit www.clicsargent.org.uk/event/windsor-half-marathon-2016 for more information.