In Aid Of Sue Ryder, Team To Run Wokingham Half Marathon In Memory Of ‘Cherished’ Friend And Relative

Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

A team of runners are lacing up their trainers this month to take on the Wokingham Half Marathon in memory of a much-loved friend and relative.

The five-strong team, who are based across the UK and as far afield as Dubai, will run on Sunday 26 February to raise funds for national healthcare charity Sue Ryder in memory of Berkshire man Mark Sessions, who died in June 2022.

The team – named Team ReMARKable – is made up of Mark’s son, Ben Sessions, nephew Dave Warren, family friends Wendy and Jeremy Brown, and Mandy Thompson, who is supporting the hospice as they cared for her mother-in-law and her friend’s mother.  

In Aid Of Sue Ryder - Wokingham Half Marathon
In Aid Of Sue Ryder - Wokingham Half Marathon

Mark’s wife, Carole, who lives in Finchampstead, said: “Mark was always very active and healthy – he regularly went to the gym, cycled to work daily, and ran – so when he was diagnosed with cancer in 2019 it was a big shock.

In Aid Of Sue Ryder - Wokingham Half Marathon

“He was on medication for a long time and still able to do the physical activities he enjoyed for some time, but sadly the cancer spread to his brain and spine over the next few years which meant that he lost a lot of function and it got to a stage where he was unable to move.”

In Aid Of Sue Ryder - Wokingham Half Marathon

Carole gave up work to care for Mark at home, but he was referred to Sue Ryder when they both required additional support.   

“The doctors were brilliant and managed to get Mark a bed at Sue Ryder Duchess of Kent Hospice, which made such a difference. In his room he was able to look out over the lovely gardens and the staff did everything they could to make him comfortable, as well as looking after me too.

“I couldn’t have managed on my own at home, and I was able to spend quality time with him and be there at the end which was really special.”

To raise funds for Sue Ryder and give back for the care Mark received, his nephew Dave will be travelling from Harrogate to take part in the Wokingham Half Marathon – an event Mark competed in himself in 1990 – alongside Wendy, Jeremy and Mandy, who live locally. Mark’s son Ben will be taking part virtually in Dubai, where he lives.

“Sue Ryder was so important for my family, and we wanted to come together and raise funds to ensure they can be there for other people going through difficult times,” says Carole. “I’m not running, but I will be there to cheer everyone on along the way!” 

The Wokingham Half Marathon, which has been running since 1984, will take place on Sunday 26 February 2023, starting and finishing at Cantley Park in Twyford and following a 13.1-mile route through the town.

In Aid Of Sue Ryder

Team ReMARKable have so far raised almost £2,000 for Sue Ryder. To donate to their fundraising page, visit: justgiving.com/team/TeamreMARKable.

Sue Ryder runs a range of local and national events throughout the year to raise funds for its palliative, neurological and bereavement support. For more information, visit. sueryder.org/events.