Father tackles Great Eastern Run in aid of hospital which cared for premature daughter

Kevin Barnes with Holly and Karl Yerrell.

Kevin Barnes with Holly and Karl Yerrell. - Credit: Archant

A loving father ran a half marathon to raise funds for the hospital which cared for his young daughter in the early weeks of her life yesterday.

Kevin Barnes, 38, of March Road, Friday Bridge, took on the 13.1 mile Perkins Great Eastern Run in Peterborough to raise money for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, King’s Lynn.

Holly, who celebrated her first birthday on Saturday, weighed just 2 lb 11 oz when she was born eight-weeks premature on October 12 last year and spent 39 days in hospital.

Her birthday also happens to be Mr Barnes and his wife Helen’s wedding anniversary.

Mr Barnes said: “She is the best gift ever - a little cracker.

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“Sometimes when I’m running and I want to stop I think about what she’s been through and it spurs me on. She’s an inspiration.

“I think so wanted to come out early because she is so inquisitive.

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“She knew it’s a huge world out there and she wanted to be a part of it.”

Mr Barnes ran with his friend Karl Yerrell, 44, of St Leonard’s Road, Leverington, who he has worked with at the Princes factory in Wisbech for 16 years.

He completed the course in one hour 52.46 minutes while Mr Yerrell crossed the line in two hours 14.18 minutes.

Mr Barnes said: “There was a bit of pressure doing it for charity and not just myself so I was pleased to finish and not be carted off in an ambulance.

“I was chuffed to bits when I found out I did it in less than two hours.”

Together they have already raised more than £500 for the hospital and they hope this amount will grow.

Mr Barnes said: “The hospital were amazing so the run was our way of saying thank you to them for their support.”

You can donate at justgiving.com/qeklh

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