LONDON marathon runner Steve Hope says he is elated at completing the world-famous run in memory of beautiful schoolgirl Becky Bell.
Steve, a technician at English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College, in Hartlepool, took part in the Virgin London Marathon on Sunday completing the 26.2 mile route in three hours and 40 minutes.
The 32-year-old completed the challenge in memory of tragic youngster Becky who died in January 2012 from a cancerous brain tumour.
He chose to raise cash for Clic Sargent, the charity that helped to care for her.
Speaking after the event, Steve told the Mail: “It was class, a really, really good atmosphere. There was so many people there, it was just great.
“It was hard but I’d put in the training which totally helped and I’m so glad I did.
“It was just a massive emotional rush, I just started crying as soon as I crossed over the finish line. It was a massive relief that I’d done it.
“The charity is what it’s about though and doing it in Becky’s memory.
“Thirty-eight thousand people ran it and they’ve all done exactly the same thing for great causes and charities. It’s one of the most rewarding things you’ll ever do.”
He added: “I’m not really achy, just feel a bit bruised and a bit heavy, but I have seen some people wandering about who can hardly walk!”
Dedicated Steve had been training for the event for the past seven months, practising in bitter cold winter weathers, and on evenings and weekends when he was not at work.
Steve hopes the race will see him bag about £3,000 for the charity, but he is yet to count up exactly how much he has made.