Vanessa Wilson On Sunday 20th October, I will be attempting to run my first marathon through the streets of Amsterdam to raise money for the Harefield Hospital. Isobel (aged 6) and Jemima (aged 4) will also be running the kids race around the Amsterdam Olympic Stadium (ably supported by Daddy)!

I’ve chosen the Harefield Hospital for an old friend, Stuart Jeffery. When we were in our early 20‘s, Stuart contracted a virus which attacked his heart, resulting in cardiomyopathy, end-stage heart failure and the urgent need for a heart transplant. The Harefield Hospital not only provided the lifesaving heart transplant that he needed but also supported his then girlfriend and the rest of their family through the toughest of times. Stuart survived and thrived, he married the girlfriend, one of my oldest and closest friends, and they went on to have a beautiful family of their own. Unfortunately, Stuart passed away on 2nd January 2012. Although he was just 34, the work of the Harefield Hospital gave him the opportunity to live a life to the fullest. He left behind two young children that are growing up to be wonderful young people and an amazing wife whose strength in the face of adversity is a true inspiration. Hopefully, we can raise a little bit of money to help the Harefield Hospital give another person a chance to have a life.

“Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives, that we are dying. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day. Do it! I say. Whatever you want to do, do it now! There are only so many tomorrows”. ~ Pope Paul VI
Vanessa Wilson