The parents of Chloe Rutherford and Liam Curry say their children will be laughing in heaven as they get set to take on the Great North Run challenge.
It is an event Lisa Rutherford and Caroline Curry have watched from the sidelines over the years as family and friends took part in the 13.1 mile course from Newcastle to South Shields.
Not once – as thousands of runners filed past them – have they had the urge to take part themselves.
However, this year, after months of persuasion, both Lisa and Caroline have relented and on September 9 – which is also Caroline’s birthday – they will be amongst the 57,000 participants on the starting line in Newcastle.
The pair will be raising funds on route for the Chloe and Liam Together Forever Trust, created as a lasting legacy to the couple who were killed in the Manchester Arena bomb attack, last May.
The Trust supports young aspiring performers and sportspeople to follow their dreams through the help of bursaries.
It wasn’t something I was ever planning on doing but I am now. I’m sure Chloe and Liam will be up there laughing at us on the day.Caroline Curry
Lisa and Caroline will be supported by teacher Dave Gibson, who taught Chloe at Harton Academy, who will push Lisa in her wheelchair.
Caroline said: “I’m sure Liam is up there laughing at me.
“We all agreed last year to apply for ballot places. But I was the only one who got a number through the ballot.
“Liam had done the Great North Run in the past, but I had no desire to do it at all.
“It wasn’t something I was planning on doing but now I am. I’m sure Chloe and Liam will be up there laughing at us on the day.”
“Dave Gibson kept offering to push Lisa in her wheelchair, Lisa finally gave in and agreed. Then someone said wouldn’t it be nice for both mams to cross the finishing line together?
Lisa added: “Chloe’s teacher Mr Gibson had been offering for months to push me in the wheelchair in the Great North Run but I said no.
“But as time went on, different things were said, then Caroline was the only one of us who got a number. Someone said about how special it would be for both mams to cross the finishing line together, so I went back to Dave and asked if he was serious and he said yes.
“All I will be doing is sitting in the wheelchair but we will be raising money for the Trust on our way round.”
A fundraising page has been set up.
To make a donation, visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/chloeandliamtogetherforevertrust2?utm_id=2&utm_term=qZKMxyx27