A LONDON Marathon veteran who was the oldest entrant on four occasions has died, aged 92.
East Londoner Paul Freedman ran his final marathon in 2015 at the age of 90. He had come to running late in life, co-founding the Havering 90 joggers group when he was 62. He ran his first half-marathon that year and went on to become a regular in the London race, which he took part in on 24 occasions and was the oldest runner in 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2015. He relished the attendant publicity.
A heart attack at 79 did not deter him — he considered it an inconvenience.
His efforts helped to raise £100,000 for the St Francis Hospice, which cared for his beloved wife Teeny in her final days. An avid West Ham fan, he trained with the first team squad before his final marathon in 2015, which he said was “a dream come true”. He cheekily offered his services as a player. Pam Court, chief executive of the St Francis Hospice in Havering, said Mr Freedman was “the most incredible ambassador and a great inspiration to everyone who met him”. The charity also paid tribute to him in an advert in the programme for West Ham’s game against West Brom at the weekend, urging fans to continue his support for the hospice. His funeral was at Waltham Abbey Cemetery.