Triathlon inspired by boy with incurable disease raises £14k

Codicote triathlon

More than 40 people took part in the triathlon - Credit: Alannah Hebbert

Villagers who gathered on Sunday for a triathlon in aid of a nine-year-old boy with a life-limiting genetic condition have raised more than £14,000.

William Eames, who lives in Codicote, has Duchenne muscular dystrophy - a progressive and incurable muscle-wasting disease which has already made William dependent on a wheelchair and will severely limit his life expectancy.

Codicote triathlon

William with some of the triathletes - Credit: Helen Allum

His mum's best friend, pilates instructor Vikki Davis, wanted to do something special for her 50th birthday that would raise money for national charity Duchenne UK and a local fund - Defending William Against Duchenne - which helps William and his family deal with the impact of his disease.

Codicote triathlon

Vikki with William's mum, Jo, and their daughters Amber and Phoebe - Credit: Alannah Hebbert

Vikki, who also lives in Codicote, set herself the target of swimming 1,250 metres, cycling 50 kilometres and running five miles back-to-back to raise money for William and the charity working towards a cure.

Codicote triathlon

The event was well-supported - Credit: Alannah Hebbert

On the day, 43 people inspired by Vikki took part in the triathlon - cycling from Codicote to Hatfield Leisure Centre for their swim, before completing the rest of the 50km cycle, followed by a five-mile fun run back in Codicote.

Codicote triathlon

William, cheering on his mum - Credit: Alannah Hebbert

About 100 people took part in the fun run, including lots of children, and the money raised has topped £14,000, with cash donations on the day still being processed. It will be split 50/50 between Duchenne UK and Defending William Against Duchenne.

Codicote triathlon

William's mum, Jo, at the front of the pack - Credit: Alannah Hebbert

William's mum, Jo, said: "The whole village came together for us on Sunday and I can't thank everyone enough. All the triathletes supported each other the whole way round and when we got back to Codicote our wonderful volunteers were stewarding the fun run and sorting out cakes and refreshments. It was an amazing day and I'm blown away by how much money was raised."

Codicote triathlon

Dozens of children took part in the fun run - Credit: Helen Allum

She added: "William's condition is continuing to decline, which is heartbreaking to watch. We find hope by funding research with Duchenne UK."

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Vikki said: "This event was all about William and his family, but he was there for us too, cheering us on and joining in the fun run on his tri-ride wheelchair.

Codicote triathlon

The triathlon included a 50km cycle ride - Credit: Alannah Hebbert

"You always wish there was more you could do, but I'm delighted we raised so much money to help with research into Duchenne, and to support William as he grows up."