BRAVE squaddies serving in Afghanistan have completed the first Miles for Men cancer run on foreign soil.
Troops, including those from Hartlepool, took time out from serving their country to do the 5k race in boiling temperatures of over 100 degrees.
Organisers back home have thanked the lads from the 34th Squadron for their heroic efforts in supporting cancer charities.
Soldier Tom Patrick, from Hartlepool, took the idea for a Miles for Men with him when he was posted to Afghanistan.
And he soon got around 40 of his comrades to join him.
Miles for Men founder Michael Day said: “Tom did the last two Miles for Men runs in Hartlepool but he couldn’t do this year’s because he was going back to Afghanistan.
“He asked to take a load of T-shirts over so the lads could do their own.
“I think it is brilliant what they have done, especially in 42 degrees.
“We totally appreciate what they do out there to begin with by serving our country, so for them to do this for us as well is amazing really.
“We’ve got to say a massive thanks to Tom and all the other lads.”
The squaddies proudly posed for photos wearing their Miles for Men T-shirts and holding a Hartlepool United flag.
They won praise from people back home when they were posted onto the Miles for Men’s official Facebook page.
Tom has also set up a webpage where people can donate and he has raised almost £400 so far.
Miles for Men launched in Hartlepool in 2012 as the town’s first dedicated run for cancer causes.
It has since spread cities including Liverpool, Sunderland and Newcastle.
But this is the first time the event has been held abroad.
Two weeks ago, 900 runners took part in Hartlepool’s third Miles for Men at Seaton Carew.
Sponsor money is still coming in but thousands of pounds are expected to have been raised for the fight against cancer.
l To sponsor Tom Patrick log on to www.justgiving.com/Tom-Patrick.