Aspiring Mo Farahs and Paula Radcliffes gathered at a launch event at the Bannatyne Health Club Cookridge Hall, where Gareth’s mum works on reception, to be quick off the mark in signing up for the event, which is due to take place on 17 May 2020.
The team is looking for 400 adult runners to complete a 10k run and 100 people, including children, to join in the fun run.
Last year’s run, which attracted more than 380 runners including Leeds Rhinos' mascot Ronnie The Rhino, raised around £10,000 for Cancer Research UK, the Cookridge community and Older People's Action in the Locality (OPAL).
Gareth Dunn was diagnosed with Synovial Sarcoma in his foot and his right leg was amputated from the knee down and he was given a 50 per cent chance of contracting secondary cancer. Gareth was then diagnosed with lung cancer in January 2017 and given 18 months to live. Gareth sadly passed away aged 27 on 29 October 2018.
During his life, Gareth was passionate about sport, applying to join the UK Paralympic Team and being accepted to train in five disciplines in preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. He also completed the London Marathon in 2018 and raised more than £120,000 in a year for Cancer Research UK, specifically for Sarcoma research.
David Smart, chairman of [the committee organising the run] said: “Last year, it was fantastic to see the whole community come together to celebrate Gareth’s life. Everyone knew and loved him. He was a huge local character and we miss him every day.
“2020 is going to be a bittersweet year for us all, as Gareth should have been in Tokyo, representing us in the Paralympics. Everyone who takes part is a gold medallist in our minds, and I’m sure he’d be incredibly proud of what we’re doing.”
Daniel Gray, regional manager at the Bannatyne Group, said: “We’re delighted to support the second annual Cookridge Community Run, and I’m sure we’ll see a lot of our members stepping off the treadmills and out into Golden Acre Park.
“Last year’s run was a fantastic event, and this year promises to be even bigger and better. Gareth would be delighted to see the community getting out, getting fit, and raising money for charity in his name.”
To sign up for the second annual Cookridge Community Run, visit http://cookridgecommunityrun.co.uk/
"Were delighted to support the second annual Cookridge Community Run, and Im sure well see a lot of our members stepping off the treadmills and out into Golden Acre Park. "
Daniel Gray, regional manager
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