A HARTLEPOOL engineer raised more than £4,000 for a charity close to her heart after she completed the toughest challenge since becoming an amputee.
Joanna Waterton successfully ran a marathon over rough terrain despite losing her left foot and part of her leg in a climbing accident.
The experienced mountaineer, rock climber, cyclist and fell runner completed the Swaledale Marathon after fighting back to fitness following her accident in the Swiss Alps in 2005.
Joanna, 41, who works for Baker Hughes oilfield service company on Hartlepool’s Tofts Farm Industrial Estate, raised £4,400 for charity School Aid India which she is a trustee of.
She said: “It was certainly by far the hardest thing I have ever attempted as an amputee.
“It was off road and rough under foot and I wasn’t sure if I would be able to do the distance, but it went loads better than I was expecting.
“I was expecting to be on crutches the next day, but it was fine and I’m looking forward to doing it again next year.
“The atmosphere on the day was fantastic and I’m really thrilled with how much I raised.”
Joanna finished the race 128th out of 149 finishers in five hours 10 minutes.
The 22.4 mile course in the Yorkshire Dales was particularly challenging for her as it was off road and had an ascent of 4,128ft.
The money she raised will pay for five months running costs of a school in Darjeeling supported by School Aid India.
Joanna, a mum of one, who lives in Guisborough, added: “My own son is four-years-old and it doesn’t feel fair that these children have such different expectations of life just because of where they were born.
“School Aid India is such an efficient way of helping to improve their chances in life as every penny raised goes out to the school.
“It helps break the cycle of poverty for parents who are too poor to be able to send their children to school.”