SUPERfit fundraiser Craig Whiteley – who last month earned the coveted World Marathon Majors medal – has netted £19,800 for St Gemma’s Hospice through his global quest for marathon glory.
The 54-year-old from Morley has now totted up the total raised for the Moortown hospice thanks to his mammoth fundraising journey and said he is over the moon at what he has achieved.
The Abbott World Marathon Majors involve completing six of the largest and most renowned marathons in the world - in Tokyo, Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York.
Chicago was Craig’s final marathon last month and came four years after he first decided to embark on the challenge as a bucket list for fundraising in memory of his best friend John Smith, who died from pancreatic cancer in 2012. He said the race was incredibly tough but it was his sponsorship and desire to raise money in memory of John that spurred him on to the finish line.
He said: “I just had to carry on to the end. It was very hard, especially in the heat - it was 70 degrees. I was very emotional, I did cry at the end. But I was very proud of myself - the proudest man in Chicago that day. I’m very proud of all the sponsorship - it’s so nice to see how much I’ve raised.”
Craig’s achievement in completing the marathon series puts him alongside only 2,400 other runners across the world and he said he’s still in disbelief that he managed it.
“It’s amazing to get this medal,” he said.
Fay Richardson, senior fundraiser at St Gemma’s Hospice, said: “Thank you so much to Craig for all his incredible fundraising efforts and all the marathons he has taken part in to support St Gemma’s. The money he has raised will directly help us provide specialist palliative and end of life care to people in Leeds. He has raised an incredible amount over the past few years and we can’t thank him enough for his ongoing support.”
To support his fundraising visit www.virginmoneygiving.com/craigwhiteley.