NYC marathon relocates to Chichester for one runner

Edward Clery celebrates completing his improvised marathon with his daughter
Edward Clery celebrates completing his improvised marathon with his daughter

HURRICANE Sandy failed to stop one marathon runner fundraising for a cause close to his heart.

Edward Clery, of Caledonian Road, Chichester, planned to run the New York Marathon in aid of the Sussex Snowdrop Trust.

He chose the charity because it supported his friends when their one-year-old son died of cancer.

When he arrived in New York, however, the marathon had been cancelled because of Hurricane Sandy.

“We arrived at JFK Airport at around 7pm local time on Friday, November 2, to be greeted by a TV screen announcing the breaking news. My initial reaction was verbal. After a year of training and losing nearly two stone in preparation I can forgive myself for the outburst.”

Edward then began to plan how he could still raise the money.

“I was trying to think how best to move forward and still run the 26.2 miles I’d been training for,” said the 34-year-old.

“With many donations already made, I decided to run the distance back in the UK. It would have been disrespectful to run state-side.”

On November 6, he began the ING New York to Just Past Butlin’s Marathon, running from Chichester through Bersted, Bognor, Felpham, back to Chichester, Lavant and finishing at Goodwood.

“It was no Manhattan, however, the sights of Bognor seafront will stay with me forever,” he said.

So far, Edward has raised £755 on his JustGiving page, www.justgiving.com/Edward-Clery.

“This race was never about me,” he said. “It was simply to raise awareness of the work and effort of the Sussex Snowdrop Trust.

“In 2010, my very close friends lost their one-year-old son to an aggressive form of cancer. This was a devastating time and one which has been hard to move forward from.

“Thankfully, with help and incredible support from family, friends and the Sussex Snowdrop Trust, the parents of Quinn have been able to take positive steps forward after the loss of their son.”

Edward said he was disappointed the marathon was cancelled but was in ‘complete favour’ of the decision.

“Having witnessed first-hand the impact of Sandy’s aftermath, it was obvious the marathon was a completely inappropriate event,” he said.