Runner's half-marathon in memory of tragic Mexborough teacher

By David Parker | 05/10/2018

Runner's half-marathon in memory of tragic Mexborough teacher

A RUNNER overcame a slipped disk to complete two half-marathons and raise hundreds of pounds in memory of a teacher.

Claire Rowan (45), a Key Stage 3 year leader at Mexborough Academy, ran the Great North Run to raise money for Team Verrico in memory of her late colleague, Hana Szczepkowski.

Hana, a former P.E. teacher, died in November 2016 at the age of 31 after being diagnosed with multiple brain tumours.

Claire (pictured) has raised £482 for Team Verrico, which funds research into cancer treatment and supports people affected by the disease.

The Team Manvers runner’s training was blighted by setbacks including a displaced disk and calf injuries.

Claire, of Wath, could not walk at all three months ago due to severe back pain but, with the help of weekly treatment, she overcame her injuries.

She also organises an annual Santa dash in Hana’s memory, which has raised hundreds of pounds for Team Verrico since its inception.

Claire said: “I was really nervous doing the Great North Run as this was the first time I had ran on my own.

“My daughter, Jessica Rowan, was running, but she is 20 years younger than me and much faster, so she started 30 minutes before.

“The best thing about the race was the warmth of the local people who helped to create a great atmosphere.”

Claire completed the race in two hours and 37 minutes but she said she was “just glad to finish it in one piece”.

She also completed the Humber Coastal, in Cleethorpes, a week later in two hours 38 minutes and 53 seconds.

“Family, friends and colleagues have been so supportive,” said Claire.

Visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/claire-rowan4 to sponsor Claire.


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