Memory of loved ones keeps South Tyneside dad running for epic challenge

Callum Larson is to run a half marathon every week in memory of his father  Gavin Larson
Callum Larson is to run a half marathon every week in memory of his father Gavin Larson

A South Tyneside dad who set himself a half marathon challenge to raise cash for three cancer charities is smashing his way through his runs.

Callum Larson is more than half way through his epic test of endurance to run a half marathon every week for a year.

Callum Larson centre with running buddies Chris Wright, left and Mark Legg

Callum Larson centre with running buddies Chris Wright, left and Mark Legg

He has completing 37 of the the runs and raised £2,370 to date.

Callum hopes to complete the 52nd as part of the Great North Run on September 10.

The 25-year-old is being spurred on to complete the challenge by the memory of four members of his family who died after losing their own battles with cancer.

In one year Callum lost his grandfather Kenny Sayers to prostate cancer, his grandmother Margaret Sayers to lung cancer, as well as his grandfather Barney Larson, who had a brain tumour and cancer throughout his body.

It’s hard but it will be worth it.

Callum Larson

All three died within months of being diagnosed.

And last October his dad Gavin lost his battle to the disease. The 48-year-old had lung cancer, which spread to his glands, and bones, as well as tumours on his brain. He had only been diagnosed six weeks earlier.

Through completing the 52 13.1-mile runs, he hopes to raise £3,000 for Macmillan, Cancer Research UK and the children’s unit at Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary.

Callum who is being supported in his efforts by friends Chris Wright, 50, and Mark Legg, 49, said: “It is really tough. I have started to get pains in my ankles and knees, but I’m more than half way through now so I’m not going to give up.

Callum Larson is to run a half marathon every week in memory of his father  Gavin Larson

Callum Larson is to run a half marathon every week in memory of his father Gavin Larson

“I have always been relatively fit with football and boxing and I’ve always run a few miles here and there, but this running 13.1 mile is the furthest I have ever run in a long time.

“Mark and Chris have been amazing and are really helping me to carry on. I am really grateful for all their support. Every week they are with me, helping push me on.

“It’s hard but it will be worth it.”

To sponsor Callum, go to www.gofundme.com and search for ‘Callum Larson’.