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Thomas (19) and Grace (16) Walding will run the half marathon on September 1 to raise money for the Prostate and Testicular Cancer Foundation NZ.
Their father, Peter, was diagnosed with cancer in 2017 and had an operation in July that year. The procedure went well, but in June last year he was re-diagnosed and underwent six weeks of radiation therapy.
Now, he was ‘‘on the road to recovery’’, Grace said.
‘‘We’re doing it for Dad. He’s really proud of us.’’
Friends of their family also had cancer, so they were running for everyone who had been affected, she said.
They started a fundraising page, and were thankful for all the support they had received.
It had already surpassed their original goal, she said.
‘‘We’re really happy with how much has been donated so far.’’
Thomas said he first heard about the event when a colleague suggested he run it for charity.
He originally planned on running the full 42km marathon, but when Grace expressed interest in running the half, he decided he would do it with her.
Training for the 21km event was going well — they sometimes ran together or with other friends.
Grace, a Columba College pupil, goes for runs from school with teachers and friends who will also take part.
She said she was looking forward to race day, and although the pair had a goal time in mind, were happy to go at their own pace.
‘‘The adrenaline will start pumping hopefully,’’ Thomas said.
‘‘We’ll cross the line together,’’ Grace said.
★ To give, go to https://dunedinmarathon-19.everydayhero.com/nz/ThomasWalding
For more Dunedin Marathon Stories see below:
Dunedin Marathon: Welcome Messages
Dunedin Marathon: The Star Race Guide
Night Shelter Incentive
Disabled Athletes to Compete
'New Runner' Ready to Tackle 10km
Knox Residents Planning to Motor