Long road to battle PTSD
Memorial Marathon a tough challenge
NUMBERS continue to grow in the Soldier On Memorial Marathon, part of this Sunday’s McDonald’s Townsville Running Festival, with a soldier from 3RAR raising his hand just a week before the event.
Private Tyesen Parker, a member of the 3RAR Admin Company’s Transport Platoon, will join a runner each from 1RAR and 2RAR and two civilians running 42.2km while wearing 10kg of body armour to raise funds and awareness for Soldier On.
Pte Parker said he was confident he would finish the run, despite never having run so far before.
“I’ve never run a marathon before, but it’s for a good cause – I definitely want to be able to help the boys who serve our country,” he said.
“The marathon is for Soldier On, supporting returned service men and women with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder ( PTSD). PTSD isn’t something I’ve experienced, but I have definitely seen some of my serving mates struggle with it when they have returned home from deployment.’’
Pte Parker will be joined by 1RAR’s Pte Alex Rutledge, 2RAR’s Cpl Richard Johnston and civilians Leigh Fordham and Caine Williams, who will all be running in the Soldier On Memorial Marathon as part of the Tony Ireland Townsville Marathon.
“The marathon should be good fun, I’ve never run that distance before, let alone with 10kg of armour on,” Pte Parker said.
“I ran 20km the other day with the armour and managed to finish that, so now just have to add another 20km!”
President of the Townsville Road Runners, Tony Gordon, said the Soldier On Memorial Run was an important new addition to the McDonald’s Townsville Running Festival, and would be part of the festival into the future.
“The Memorial Run is already exceeding expectations, attracting not just soldiers from First, Second and Third Battalions but two civilians as well. Having Tyesen join the run will give the other guys even more competition and motivation to finish,” Mr Gordon said.
“Soldier On is an important organisation, especially to families and the community in Townsville.’’
The 17th Annual McDonald’s Townsville Running Festival will be held this Sunday at Jezzine Barracks.
To donate to Tyesen’s fundraising efforts visit soldieron. giveeasy. org/ campaigns/ tyesen-parker- memorialmarathon/
HEAVY LOAD: Private Tyesen Parker of 3RAR.