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Marathon memories of Mantha

PUBLISHED: 10:31 29 January 2010 | UPDATED: 16:07 06 July 2010

Mark Boggis

THE sister of a much-loved Lowestoft girl who died as she made her way to primary school almost three years ago is preparing to run the London Marathon in her memory.

THE sister of a much-loved Lowestoft girl who died as she made her way to primary school almost three years ago is preparing to run the London Marathon in her memory.

Six-year-old Samantha “Mantha” Castledine died in March 2007 when she was involved in a collision with a lorry at the crossing on the A12 Yarmouth Road.

And now her sister Jo Woolnough is preparing to tackle her first-ever marathon when she aims to complete the tough 26.2 mile 2010 Virgin London Marathon in April.

“I've always said I was going to try to get into the London Marathon to raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance, as they did so much to try to help Mantha,” Mrs Woolnough said.

“My friend Michelle Ford, from Southwold, will be running the marathon as well for the first time and she is raising funds for the air ambulance - and awareness of Mantha - while I will be running for Children with Leukaemia.

“I wanted a children's charity as it relates to Mantha, and I'm hoping that we can raise hundreds of pounds for both worthy causes.”

The causes were boosted when almost £500 was raised for charity when The Randolph, in Reydon, held its January quiz. In all £483 was raised which includes a donation to Jo Woolnough's chosen charities.

The next quiz takes place on Friday, February 19. Teams must be registered in advance at the Randoph.

To donate to Mrs Woolnough's marathon efforts visit www.bmycharity.com and search for Jo Woolnough

Also running the London Marathon for the first-ever time is Southwold's Maria Adey. She currently works

for UK Athletics but regularly returns to north Suffolk for the weekends to train.

And like Jo Woolnough, she has been inspired and motivated by a close family member. Maria's younger brother George, who attends Saint Felix School, is a talented tennis player who is succeeding in his chosen sport despite being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 2004.

“Because of the diabetes he is dependent on an insulin pump to enable him to lead an ordinary life and so that he can continue to compete in tournaments,” Maria said.

So by making a “perhaps crazy” decision to run in this year's marathon, Maria will be raising money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

“JDRF need funding in order to continue their research into the disease and to help sufferers like George to control the effects of the condition and ultimately find a cure,” she said.

To donate to Maria's marathon cause, visit www.justgiving.com/mariaadey

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