Hero tells parkrun story
RUNNING: It was a beautiful Saturday morning with 60 participants ready to go at Airlie Beach parkrun.
It was also a special occasion for parkrun stalwart and volunteer Bob Barford.
“I was thinking: 18 months ago when myself, Justin Knight-Gray and a bunch of local runners got Airlie Beach parkrun up and going, my personal aim was to break 25 minutes for the 5km run,” he said.
“My wife and some of her friends just wanted to walk the distance. Justin and a few others wanted to be first over the line. But more important than all that, we all wanted to be part of an organisation that encourages participation.
“Yes, I cracked the 25-minute mark after nine months or so, Justin has been first over the line a number of times, Lesley (my wife) has clocked up a number of personal bests. There are countless stories of people achieving goals.
“Last Saturday, after five months without participating, with a diagnosis of advanced prostate cancer and a new left hip joint, I again crossed the finish line in 61 minutes.
“...it felt as good as cracking my 25-minute goal. These personal challenges are so well supported by our parkrun community. Thank you to you all.”
Alex Verelst was first over the line in 18.01. Aimee Sulzberger was first for the ladies in 23.12.
HERO EFFORT: Bob Barford completes the Airlie Beach parkrun course on Saturday.