Deirdre’s 50km challenge for dementia raises £646

Deirdre’s 50km challenge for dementia raises £646

Back in Easter, Deirdre Race (Head of Nursing for Safeguarding & Vulnerable at Frimley Health), set on a 50km challenge for dementia in memory of her dad, Joe Mc Intyre

Despite social distancing, Deirdre managed to continue with the training maintaining Government advice, early walks before 7am helped. She had already completed a 50k test run in preparation for the event on Easter Sunday.

Once Phase 1 restrictions were reduced, she increased her distance straight away to 15 miles and continued to increase weekly.

Deirdre said; “I’m fortunate enough to live close to Windsor Castle & Saville Gardens so ample space to maintain social distancing while ramping up the miles. I have now completed the 50 kilometres – I missed the camaraderie of completing an ultra-challenge however the cause was important so waiting another year seemed too long.

Deirdre’s story;

My dad, fondly known as ‘Big Joe’ was diagnosed with vascular dementia when he was 67. My mum was his sole carer for many years, she found it very hard emotionally and physically but continued to put his needs first despite grieving while she watched her husband slowly disappear.

In the latter years of his dementia, my dad was admitted to a nursing home so my mum could have some respite – my younger sister was very ill and my mum was caring for her as well. The nursing staff quickly realised that he needed 24 hour care as his dementia was progressing very quickly – as a family we found this very difficult and sad. He never returned home.

It was so hard and sad to watch my dad’s decline knowing we had no control over it. There was a strong sense of loss even though he was alive. He passed away at the age of 75. He was the most gentle, caring, kind and loving father who is greatly missed  but will always be remembered.

The money raised for Frimley Health Charity through her socially distant 50km challenge will contribute to creating more dementia friendly areas across the Trust. This will help patients adjust better to their surroundings which will improve their lives & experiences while in hospital.

This in turn will help their carers, just like my mum – they are the true unsung heroes.

Deirdre’s role involves managing her team to care for patients with mental health, dementia and learning disabilities.  We are working closely with Deirdre on how we are going to use this money.

If you wish to support, please visit her fundraising page;

Click here to do your own fundraising for a cause close to your heart

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