'A promise kept' - Run for Benny hailed a success

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. - Credit: Supplied by Duncan Baker

"A promise kept" is how a bereaved dad described the success of a north Norfolk marathon in honour of his son. 

Kev Pitcher, from East Runton, said the Sunday, August 8 'run for Benny' was "an incredible rollercoaster of emotions" and a day he would never forget.

Kevin Pitcher with his son, Benny, who died in 2020 of childhood cancer. 

Kevin Pitcher with his son, Benny, who died in 2020 of childhood cancer. - Credit: Supplied by Kevin Pitcher

Mr Pitcher said: "We've kept our promise to Benny. He got the day that he deserved. There were so many different emotions, it was an incredible day."

Benny died on July 12 last year aged six after losing a battle with cancer.

Around 17 people ran the full distance of the marathon, which started at Sheringham Primary School at 9am and finished outside the Crown on Lifeboat Plain, Sheringham, five-and-a-half hours later.

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. - Credit: Supplied by Duncan Baker

Among the runners was North Norfolk MP Duncan Baker, who is also in training for the London Marathon, when he will attempt to raise at least £1,000 for 26 different charities


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Others joined them at various points along the route and a group was there to cheer on the runners as they approached the finish line. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. - Credit: Supplied by Duncan Baker

Mr Pitcher said: "We all started and finished together, there were no egos. A few of the lads struggled towards the end but we all stayed as a group and as we crossed the finish line it was a special moment."

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Mr Pitcher and fellow runner Ben Letzer both carried superhero-themed radiotherapy masks weighing around 5kg each, which Benny used during his treatment. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. - Credit: Supplied by Duncan Baker

Mr Pitcher said he held his out in front of him as he crossed the finish line, so Benny, symbolically, came first.

Mr Pitcher has also had some of Benny's ashes used in a new tattoo on his leg, which has the words: 'You don't have to be 6ft 6'' to be a Superhero'.

He and his wife Julie are setting up a charity called Benny's Battalion, named after their son.

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. - Credit: Supplied by Duncan Baker

The run will take the total the couple have raised in the past 18 months up to around £30,000. As well as the new charity, the funds will go to support the East Anglia's Children's Hospices (EACH), and Cromer Children’s Charity. 

The aim of the new charity will be to support other families of terminally ill children who have limited support.

Duncan Baker was among the runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher.

Duncan Baker was among the runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. - Credit: Supplied by Duncan Baker

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. - Credit: Supplied by Duncan Baker

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. 

Runners taking part in Benny's Poppyline Marathon, held in memory of Benny Pitcher. - Credit: Supplied by Duncan Baker


 

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