Every entrant had story to tell

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THE first Miles for Men race was harder for some than others.

A number of entrants completed the three-mile course in wheelchairs including terminally-ill seven-year-old Dan Sullivan.

Despite fighting myeloid leukaemia, an aggressive and rare blood disorder, young Dan was helped along the course by around 10 family and friends.

Big brother Luke Sullivan, 21, said: “It is a brilliant event. It is massive to Dan and meant a lot to him to be able to take part.

“He has been quite poorly lately. This time last week you wouldn’t have thought he was up to it.”

The family were all sponsored and Dan sold transfer tattoos at a fun day after the race for £1 each.

Dan, who attends Eldon Grove Primary School, in Hartlepool, appeared in the Mail recently after he got to sing with pop star Jessie J on stage to fulfil one of his wishes.

Another inspirational entrant was Richard Bradley, 30, who was left paralysed after a freak accident at work five years ago.

A former cable puller, he severed his spinal cord, broke all of his ribs and punctured both of his lungs after plunging from a 26ft platform on a site in Crawley, West Sussex.

But he completed the route along with his 10-year-old son Lewis.

Richard, of Rift House, Hartlepool, said: “We lost a family member to leukaemia so it is in memory of him.

“Until this, there was nothing out there for men with cancer.

“Michael has done an outstanding job. It needed doing basically.”

St Francis Junior Football Club entered six teams in the race.

Vice chairman Martin Travers, 44, said: “It is great and should help raise awareness. The turnout was more than I expected and it has been a really good day.”

John Embleton, a 37-year-old Hartlepool policemen, said: “My partner did Race for Life and I wanted to do it on behalf of my uncle who died of cancer.

“It is about time we did something like this for men.”

Deen Kinnersley, 47, a baker of Wynyard Road, Hartlepool, said: “My dad died of cancer four years ago and my father in law two years ago so this is a good cause.

“The more research into it the quicker they find a cure.”

Karl Young, 32, of the Fens, Hartlepool, said: “I can’t do Race for Life so this is my way of doing something.

“My mum has had cancer three times. It is good to see so many people come together.”