BALLYMONEY lady Arlene Pettinger has once again hit the streets of Belfast and has successfully completed another marathon.
Arlene has now gone the distance a total of 11 times in memory of her daughter Lisa, who died of a brain stem tumour at the age of 12.
The recent Belfast City Marathon took place on Monday, May 2, and Arlene was running as the face of Macmillan Cancer Support at the event, which she finished in a time of six hours.
“This was a tough one for me, I ran in beautiful sunshine, but in a lot of pain,” said Arlene. “It was thanks to the help of my son Stephen who ran the final seven miles with me and more that I eventually made it to the finish line!
“I was a little disappointed with my time. But it was more than made up for by the encouragement of so many supporters and the generosity of the people of Ballymoney and beyond including Coatbridge Scotland which raised £5,250 for Macmillan Cancer Support.”
If things go to plan, Arlene is hoping to run one last time at the marathon distance next year.
She continued: “All being well next year will be my 12th marathon and my last - one for each year of Lisa’s life. I have thought about it very seriously and I plan to hang up my trainers for a wee while to let my body recover. However I’m not planning to quit entirely - I maybe put them back on in a few years and try for a shorter distance.
“It has been a very busy year being the Face of Macmillan for the Belfast Marathon, but I’ve enjoyed it. However I’m ready for a wee break now though and the chance to put my feet up for a while.”
Arlene has now raised a staggering £48,500 for Macmillan Cancer Support and would like to convey her thanks to all those who helped her to raise another wonderful amount of money for her favourite charity.
She added: “Special thanks go to people such as Margaret Taylor and her mum Janette Reid. ‘The Famous Five’ and Glebeside SPAR STARS past n present, Glebe Rangers Football Team and its supporters, The Manor Hotel Ballymoney, my employer David Smyth and all my friends at Glebeside Spar and its customers, all of whom give me tremendous support and encouragement in my marathon fundraising efforts.
“I am absolutely delighted and its all thanks to the generosity of the people around me. Some of these people are living with cancer, and they are an inspiration to me. Most of us will know of some one who has been affected by cancer and it just proves we can all make a difference. I wish to thank everyone for helping to make this huge difference”.
Macmillan Cancer Support seeks to help those people living with cancer and their families by providing information and practical, emotional, and financial support at the point of need. The Macmillan Cancer Support Line can be contacted free on 0808 808 00 00 Monday to Friday, 9am-8pm. www.macmillan.org.uk