Blind Veterans UK Stephen Shepherd runs in marathon in aid of the charity that changed his life
1 October 2012 15:13
The inspirational Stephen Shepherd took part in the Robin Hood Half Marathon yesterday as a way of saying thank you to Blind Veterans UK, the charity that changed his life.
Nottingham born blind veteran, Stephen Shepherd, took part in the Robin Hood Half Marathon yesterday, 30 September 2012, accompanied by his personal trainer as a way of saying thank you to Blind Veterans UK, formerly St. Dunstan's, the charity that changed his life.
Not only has Stephen, 60, had to overcome his battle with blindness, but he has also had to recover from a kidney transplant which left him immobile for weeks.
Stephen joined the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers in the 70s and lost his sight due to diabetic retinopathy years later. For the past five years he has received training and rehabilitation from Blind Veterans UK. Stephen ran the 13.1 mile marathon alongside Craig Stuart, his personal trainer, who has been a key support for him throughout his recovery from the transplant.
Speaking about the charity, he said: "Blind Veterans UK has given me so much and I feel that I need to give something back. I had to have a kidney transplant, and was told once I was going through my recovery that the best thing for me to do would be to get fit again. My personal trainer said that he wanted to take part in a marathon. I said that I would take part with him".
"Blind Veterans UK has been so good to me. Just one example of this is them giving me a brand new wet room, as I am not able to bath after my transplant. I feel that so many people are doing things for me, and I really want to give something back".
"I remember one of the first people I met at Blind Veterans UK told me was that the charity's philosophy is that there is no such word as can't, which I found so positive. I was made to feel that even though I was blind and 55, anything would be possible. I do not feel that I would have been able to take part in this without the support of all of the people who have been there for me".
Andrew Jones, Director of Fundraising and Communications at Blind Veterans UK, said: "Like his fellow members of Blind Veterans UK, Stephen Shepherd is a truly inspirational person, and we are enormously grateful for the all of his fundraising support. Not only has he taken on the challenge of running in a 13.1 mile marathon as someone who is blind, but he has also only recently recovered from a kidney transplant which left him immobile for weeks. We are very proud that he ran in the name of Blind Veterans UK".