Reporter to run marathon in memory of his colleague

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A reporter for the Gazette and HeraldExpress newspapers will be running the Amsterdam Marathon on Sunday.

David O’Neill, who covers the Berkhamsted area, is dedicating the challenge to colleague Jonathan Saunders, who died aged 24 from a rare form of bone cancer last month.

David is fundraising for The Willow Foundation, a charity that paid for Jonny and his new wife Adella to have a weekend trip to Edinburgh during his illness.

David has raised £360 for the charity, which funds special days out for seriously ill 16 to 40-year-olds, in two weeks’ worth of fundraising.

The 26-year-old said he is looking forward to seeing the scenery along the Amstel River, which the route goes alongside.

But he said: “I’m not so much looking forward to all of the running. I’ve only gotten up to 19 miles so far, which was painful.

“I’ve got some minor niggles in my legs, but if they don’t play up, it will be OK.

“Hopefully Jonny will be cheering me on at the end.”

To sponsor David, visit www.justgiving.com/David-O-Neill1