Paul takes part in 'death race'

A FIREFIGHTER is to race 150 miles across one of the world s most hostile environments to raise money for a charity that helped save his older brother s life. Paul Oliver, who is a firefighter in St Neots, is taking part in a run commonly known as the d

A FIREFIGHTER is to race 150 miles across one of the world's most hostile environments to raise money for a charity that helped save his older brother's life.

Paul Oliver, who is a firefighter in St Neots, is taking part in a run commonly known as 'the death race' - a gruelling challenge which stretches across the Sahara Desert.

The 26-year-old is taking up the challenge to support Macmillan Cancer Support. The charity treated his brother David when he was diagnosed with skin cancer.

Paul, who is a member of the Riverside Runners Club, said: "When I heard the news I felt completely helpless - I didn't contact him because I didn't know what to say.


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"Luckily the Macmillan nurses were on hand to offer him the emotional support he needed to get through his ordeal and make a full recovery."

Although he may be used to fires, Paul will be facing soaring temperatures reaching 130F (40C) during the day, and almost freezing at night, as he tackles the Marathon des Sables.

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The sand marathon (another of the names given to the challenge) takes place over seven days and is the equivalent of almost six marathons.

This is the third time the former Longsands College pupil has raised money for Macmillan.

Previously he raised £4,000 after rowing non-stop on a rowing machine and cycling 180 miles along the Norfolk coast.

Paul, who lives in Huntingdon Street, added: "Everyone knows someone who has been affected by cancer or whose lives have been touched by the amazing work of Macmillan nurses.

"I've signed up for the marathon to give something back to the people that gave my family so much."

To make sure Paul secures a place in the race, which takes place in March 2008, he will need to raise the £2,500 entry fee before raising money for the charity. His fundraising efforts start with a 30-mile rowing challenge at the end of July.

INFORMATION: To sponsor Paul, e-mail paul.oliver@cambsfire.gov.uk

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