Town soldier relishing marathon challenge

Grantham soldier Sgt Jason Desmond will run the 2012 London Marathon.

Grantham soldier Sgt Jason Desmond will run the 2012 London Marathon.

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A SOLDIER from Grantham is set to run the London Marathon for charity - while carrying 40lbs on his back.

Sgt Jason Desmond of New Beacon Road, Grantham, is currently stationed at Waterbeach 39 Engineer Regiment. He will be raising money for the New Life Foundation which helps disabled and terminally ill children and the Amy Benevolent Fund.

“I’ve run the marathon before but that was ten years ago. I’ve applied for a place a few times since but this is the first time I’ve been accepted since.

“I decided to run for the New Life Foundation after seeing how the charity helped a little boy get a voice box which meant he could talk to his parents for the first time in his life.

“I got in touch with the charity and said I would like to run for them and they were delighted.”

Sgt Desmond hopes to raise in excess of £5,000. His plan is to donate the first £5,000 he raises to the New Life Foundation and anything else he raises to the Army Benevolent Fund.

He said: “It costs £5,000 to get a child a new voice box so everything over that will go to the Army Benevolent Fund.”

As if running a marathon isn’t tough enough, Sgt Desmond plans to do so with 40lbs of weight on his back. However, his training is already progressing well.

He said: “I started my training when I was in Afghanistan. I wanted to carry the extra weight in my military kit to make it a bit more of a challenge. But I’m looking forward to it and hopefully I can raise some more money from spectators as I’m running.”

Prior to running April’s London Marathon, Sgt Desmond will be holding an an auction on March 3 in the hope of raising more funds.

Sgt Desmond has been in the army for 14 years and completed nine tours of duty.

l If you would like to make a donation or provide an auction item, call 01223 779986 or e-mail: traceydesmond@hotmail.co.uk