Run­ning the NYC Marathon for a cause

Auckland City Harbour News - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - CATRIN OWEN

Two women are off to run the New York Marathon all for a very spe­cial rea­son.

Both have dif­fer­ent sto­ries but there’s one strong con­nec­tion, a young girl called Holly.

Mary Pre­to­rius from Mt Eden was not a run­ner un­til this year, she’d never run a half marathon let alone a full 42 kilo­me­tres.

‘‘It’s been chal­leng­ing and such a learn­ing curve be­cause it’s some­thing so new,’’ she says.

She started train­ing in June af­ter she was ‘‘peer-pres­sured’’ into run­ning the marathon by her brother David Pre­to­rius.

In March 2010, Mary’s niece, Holly, was paral­ysed from the waist down in a car ac­ci­dent when she was 6.

Holly, her sis­ter Alexan­dra and brother Adam were re­turn­ing home from school with their grand­mother when the ac­ci­dent hap­pened. Four-year-old Adam died and Holly re­ceived crit­i­cal in­juries.

She was placed in an in­duced coma for six days, needed metal plates in­serted into her neck and brain surgery to re­duce swelling to sur­vive.

‘‘It was a hor­ren­dous time for us as a fam­ily,’’ Mary says.

Her brother David, (Holly’s dad) ran the New York marathon last year to raise money for the CatWalk Spinal Cord In­jury Trust and is lead­ing the team again this year.

‘‘It’s re­ally cool to share some­thing like this with my brother, even though he’ll be way up the front and I’ll be way out the back,’’ she says.

Deb­bie Bourne from Mt Al­bert is also head­ing along to the Big Ap­ple to run for Holly and raise money for the CatWalk Trust.

Un­like Mary, Bourne has been run­ning since she was 15 and has run four half marathons.

Bourne works with David and he en­cour­aged her to come along and run the race.

She says there’s no bet­ter cause, but she’s also do­ing it for her­self.

‘‘My mum, aunt and un­cle got di­ag­nosed with can­cer in 2014 and my aunt passed away but mum is still fight­ing,’’ she says.

‘‘So that just made me think as well to live life, it’s not a bucket list item but it’s some­thing for me.’’

Both ladies are run­ning to raise money for the trust which raises funds to find a cure for spinal cord in­juries.

Got to team­cat­walk2016. go­


Mary Pre­to­rius and Deb­bie Bourne are ready to hit the streets of New York City.

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