Un­der­age en­trant in event helps Hospice

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By JAMES GREEN­LAND

A Whitby boy has raised money for char­ity by run­ning in the Welling­ton marathon, and he had to lie about his age to com­pete.

Eleven-year old Kian Knight promised his can­cer- stricken friend Va that he would do some­thing spe­cial for her and her care­givers – and he kept that prom­ise, strap­ping on his shoes and run­ning the race of his life to raise $1100 for Mary Pot­ter Hospice.

Par­tic­i­pants in Welling­ton marathon’s 10 kilo­me­tre race must usu­ally be over 13, but Kian was de­ter­mined he would run that he lied on the en­try form.

“I couldn’t not do it, af­ter promis­ing her,” Kian, who had never pre­vi­ously run a full 10km, said.

The Knight fam­ily were good friends of Va, who worked with Kian’s dad Wayne at the Whit­taker’s fac­tory.

“I have known Va for ages, since I was lit­tle,” he said.

Kian said Va spent about seven weeks at Mary Pot­ter Hospice in Welling­ton be­fore suc­cumb­ing to can­cer.

“She was a fighter, a real sur­vivor. But then she died. “It was re­ally sad. “I re­ally like to fundraise for peo­ple who are in a less for­tu­nate po­si­tion than us,” he said.

Util­is­ing his speed and fit­ness, Kian ran around the Whit­taker’s fac­tory, which his un­cles own, gath­er­ing do­na­tions from Va’s old work­mates.

“They knew her re­ally well, and were sad, so wanted to take part,” Kian said.

He trained for the fundrais­ing race with his dad, who is a half­marathon run­ner.

“I would run eight or nine kilo­me­tres with dad, but I didn’t want to do the full 10km un­til the ac­tual thing. I just put my head down and ran hard out at the fin­ish line.

“I am faster than thought I could be.”

Kian came home in a re­spectable 51 min­utes, which means he fundraised at a rate of over one thou­sand dol­lars per hour.

Mary Pot­ter Hospice ma­jor re­la­tion­ships man­ager Char­lotte White vis­ited Kian’s school, Sa­muel Mars­den Col­le­giate, last month, to re­ceive his $ 1100 cheque.

She said he dis­played re­mark­able ‘‘ up- and- go’’ and proved kids can achieve ex­tra­or­di­nary things.

“It shows that peo­ple of all ages can sup­port in what­ever way they can.”

Kian said he is pleased the money will be used to pay the salaries of hospice nurses.

His mum Patsy Knight said she was ex­tremely proud of her “very good kid”.

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Photo: JAMES GREEN­LAND

Fundrais­ing run­ner: Eleven-year-old Kian Knight of Whitby de­cided to run 10 kilo­me­tres in the Welling­ton marathon to raise money for Mary Pot­ter Hospice.

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