FOR many people taking part in sporting events, one of the difficulties can be deciding upon which charity to raise money for.
But one group of runners have deftly avoided that challenge.
Twenty-six people will now run 26 miles each in memory of “great Limerick heroes” and their associated causes or charities, under the Barrington’s Hospital Great Limerick Run on May 3, which is 14 weeks away.
Denyse O’Brien, who is from Cork but lives in Limerick, came up with the idea, which has since taken flight, with 104 runners now signing up to run and walk for their associated causes.
“As well as the 26 marathon runners, we have four marathon relay teams and countless people doing the 10k - all already signed up before January 1. Having not been able to decide which charity to run for, we decided to dedicate one mile to one great Limerick hero and so far we have many,” she said.
Limerickman Brian Hogan, who was left blind and partially paralysed following an unprovoked attack, will also be taking part in the marathon, and will be pushed by friends, loved ones and staff of Headway, an organisation on Steamboat Quay for people with acquired brain injuries.
One mile will be allocated per charity or a person who has inspired others, and Brian is ‘mile 26’, while Fionnbar Walsh, the Limerick father of Kerry teenager Donal, who passed away from cancer aged 16, has also come out to support this initiative in an online video.
Appropriately, mile 16 is dedicated to Donal Walsh.
Donations received by the group will also go towards Sophie’s Journey Foundation, in memory of Sophie Mulcahy, who passed away last year; Limerick City Fire & Rescue, Limerick Animal Welfare, Grow Ireland Mental Health Limerick, Focus Ireland, Dòchas - Hope for people with Autism Limerick, the Corbett Suicide Prevention patrol in the city, Rape Crisis Midwest, Jack & Jill Children’s Foundation, and Cliona’s Foundation Limerick.
The group are also running for Adapt House Limerick, Injured Jockeys Limerick, Limerick Red Cross, Milford Hospice and more.
Along the route they hope to be joined by many household names, which will be revealed at a later date.
Registration for this year’s run is already 30% up on this time last year, with more than 1,100 people now signed up for the series of races on Sunday, May 3, as part of the Riverfest weekend in the city. www.greatlimerickrun.com/