'Run to the Beat' with Bernie and Julia

On Sunday 26th September, Bernie Byers and Julia Braithwaite ran a half marathon 'Run to the beat' in aid of Watford Mencap, and in memory of Bernies sister, Patsy. Patsy was born with Downs Syndrome and sadly passed away last year.

Bernie and Julia completed the race in a fantastic 2 hours and 29 minutes and have been raising money for Watford Mencap on their Just Giving page http://www.justgiving.com/RuntotheBeatwithBernieandJulia.

Below Bernie explains about why he decided to run and fundraise for Watford Mencap-

We all have challenges through our lives, but these pale into insignificance when you consider the daily challenges some are faced with, just to get by or make a small positive change to the way they live.

I feel greatly privileged to have grown up at home with my dear sister patsy, who was born with a severe case of Downs Syndrome. Life at home was never dull or predictable. My parents worked endlessly to support the whole family, but were left with little time for them. We laughed together, we cried together and although Patsy could not communicate with speech, you always knew how she felt and I am sure she knew the same about us all. We had some big highs and lows, within our daily lives, but through a very loving and close knit family we always moved forward.

Patsys life was mixed, going from our home, unfortunately to what we would now look back at as a institution, as my parents felt unable to continue with full time care. Care also became too difficult overall with a growing family. Not a decision that was made easily and with many tears, a decision was finally made.

Fortunately Patsys later years were spent in a truly amazing care home located near my parents at the time in St Albans, where she thrived and I know she was truly happy and content, until she passed away. For all the staff at Beau Sejour, and anyone connected in any way to the care of others, I have total admiration for you all.

If you have an understanding of the work Mencap carry out, please dig deep and make a donation to our cause, for our achievement, which we know is small in comparison to the work this charity carry out on a daily basis.

We completed our 13.1 mile run in 2hours 29mins, together, which was our plan from the start. Not the fastest ever, but we certainly had our tough moments out there.

Please help support Bernie and Julia and Watford Mencap by donating now at http://www.justgiving.com/RuntotheBeatwithBernieandJulia.

Congratulations to Bernie and Julia, for completing the race and for their fantastic fundraising effort.

Posted on Sunday, 17th October 2010