Mud, sweat and a pint in memory of Jim #hospiceheroes #toughmudder

Published on: 01/10/2014

It’s no wonder that Tough Mudder – a 10-12 mile obstacle course designed to test all-around strength, stamina, teamwork and mental grit – is described as ‘probably the toughest event on the planet’. whsj_mark_cunningham_2

You may think an event boasting obstacle courses such as ‘Electroshock Therapy’, ‘Everest’ and ‘Artic Enema’ is surely a challenge that only hard-core fitness fanatics and adrenaline junkies would sign up for, but for Mark Cunningham and team ‘B Block’, a very special friend was the drive behind their challenge.

Mark says, “Jim Kelly was a serving Police Officer on a busy response block who would often put his welfare second to help people in times of need. Myself and many others in the team had the pleasure of working alongside him. Often affectionately called ‘The Angry Chimp’ on the Block, Jim was hands down one of the best Bobbies most of us ever had the pleasure to meet. After developing a brain tumour, Jim was cared for by the wonderful staff at Wirral Hospice St John’s before he passed away peacefully in February of this year. He was a colleague, a friend, a husband and a dad.”

As a tribute to their friend, Jim’s colleagues signed up for Tough Mudder North West in September, knowing that the event would have been right up Jim’s street. “He remained strong right to the end and so this was our chance to be strong for Jim”.

“We were all responsible for spreading the word and raising money – runners and cheerleaders together. As we arrived at the event, a chap with a microphone and PA saw us all – a sea of blue t-shirts and gave a shout out to thousands of people queuing to enter the course. Even a couple of marshals with megaphones further down the course gave the team and the Hospice a shout-out too! It was amazing. We were very proud to be representing Wirral Hospice, wearing our t-shirts with pride and remembering Jim as we put our all into each obstacle. As we crossed the finish line, we were presented with the infamous Tough Mudder headbands and a celebratory pint. We stood there together, pint in hand and toasted Jim and the Hospice. whsj_mark_cunningham_3

It’s taken a few days to start to feel human again – a few aches and pains in places that I never knew could ache and mud in places that mud really should never be! Raising money for Wirral Hospice St John’s is a small way of saying thank you to the amazing staff that do a tough job in such a caring way every day. We had an amazing time with lots of people on our support team wishing they had run the course too. I think the team will be bigger next year!”

Mark and the team have raised an incredible £945.00 for Wirral Hospice which will help us to continue to provide our special care future patients and their families. Thank you Team B Block!

To support Team B Block, visit their fundraising page: