A Derry man who lost his life partner to cancer two years ago, is asking local men to sign up to next week’s Foyle Hospice male walk/run.
Retired bin man Charlie Nash loved going on long walks with his partner Geraldine.
“We walked everywhere together,” said Charlie. “Geraldine loved walking down the hill into town from our home in Hazelbank. Mind you, she wasn’t too keen on coming back up the hill. She wanted a taxi back.”
On Sunday September 20, Charlie will be among the hundreds of men taking to the streets of Derry for the annual Yer Man’s Foyle Hospice male walk.
And Charlie has issued a challenge to the men and boys of Derry.
“Get out and do it,” he said. “We should all be out supporting our hospice. We should be out supporting this event in the kind of numbers that the women do it in with their walk in June.”
It was in 2013 that Charlie lost his partner Geraldine when she passed away peacefully in the Foyle Hospice.
She had been diagnosed with lung cancer just eight weeks earlier.
The couple had been together for almost 30 years, and Charlie had retired just three days before her death.
“Geraldine was 59,” he said. “She had been out of breath for ages. When she finally got the diagnosis we found out the cancer had spread to her bones. To begin with we looked after her at home but it became too difficult.
“We moved her to the Foyle Hospice. She was so much more comfortable there. Her family and I were there when she died, it was very peaceful.
“The people at the Foyle Hospice were so good to us. We couldn’t have coped without the Foyle Hospice. It was my first experience of being there. It needs to be better supported by the government.
Charlie’s walk next Sunday will be a bittersweet one.
The walk will be a painful reminder of the many evening walks he took with Geraldine, but he’ll also being helping to raise some of the thousands of pounds the Foyle Hospice needs to raise every year just to keep its doors open.
But he says he’ll be supported by the many friends he has made in the local group, the Pink Panthers.
Charlie’s still fresh from last weekend’s half marathon where he and the Pink Panthers supported Derry marathon legend Danny Sheerin on his first few miles. The group then waited to bring Danny in with them at the end.
The Annual Foyle Hospice Male Walk/Run & Junior Boys Mini Marathon will commence at 1.30pm on Sunday September 20 and start/finish from Sainsbury’s Car Park.
The annual walk has two scenic routes to choose from so whatever your age and ability, you can take up the challenge whilst doing your bit to help your local hospice carry on caring.
The longer 5 mile route will take in the Peace Bridge and Foyle Bridge or the shorter route of 2 miles will travel up to the Peace Bridge then return to Sainsbury’s car park.
Registration is only £8, inc T-shirt, medal and goody bag and could not be easier .
Simply contact the Fundraising Centre by phoning (028) 71 359 888 or by emailing email@example.com.
Forms are also available at all the Foyle Hospice Shop outlets and local leisure centres or to make it even easier why not register now online and part of this fabulous event.