Trevor completes half marathon challenge in memory of his mum
- Credit: supplied
A father-of-two, who has a hip replacement and who had to have his knee rebuilt, has run through the pain barrier to complete a half marathon for charity.
Trevor Groves, of Irwin Close, Reepham, ran the City of Norwich Half Marathon for The Encephalitis Society on Sunday with his two sons and has raised just over £1000.
He wanted to show his support for the charity after his beloved mum June died from the condition, an inflammation of the brain, earlier this year.
Trevor said: 'My mum was 79, going on 60. She looked after a house, garden, car, and walked her dog every day.
'But it was back in March this year she said she felt a little unwell with flu-like symptoms and a slight metallic taste in her mouth.
'This went on for a couple of weeks, but she wasn't telling us the full story as she was a proud woman and never wanted any fuss or to trouble us.'
However, a few weeks later he realised something was seriously wrong with his mum and rushed to her home to find her slurring her words and dribbling from her mouth. She was also in a confused state – asking for her glasses, even though she was wearing them, and buttering bread with her fingers.
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He said it was 'a moment that changed my life forever', adding: 'I was shocked to see her like this – I never got to say goodbye as this was the last time she knew who I was.'
His mother was taken to hospital where she was put on a ventilator and had several lumbar punctures to find out what was wrong.
It was then he was told she had Encephalitis.
Mr Groves said: 'I had never heard about Encephalitis. In fact, I couldn't even spell it to find out what it was.
'Once I had found about what it was I knew we had lost mum as she never regained consciousness
'The hospital was wonderful to us and the care she received was remarkable, but after 14 days of hope she was taken off the ventilator and put into side room where she slowly slipped away, with me and my brother arriving at her bedside only five minutes before she died.
'We were so glad we made it in time as my deepest fear was that she would die alone.'
Now Mr Groves, who had his knee rebuilt 14 years ago and a hip joint replacement five years ago, is turning his attention to helping other families who have been affected by Encephalitis.
'I want to do all I can to raise awareness about this devastating disease which doesn't pay any regard to age, race, and fitness and can manifest itself into a life-changing condition at such speed,' he said.
'I can only imagine the suffering of people trying to recover from Encephalitis and I need to do my bit to help raise the profile of this largely deadly condition.'
The 54-year-old was joined on the run by his two sons Robert, 29, and Sam, 26.
Dr Ava Easton, Chief Executive of The Encephalitis Society, said: 'Encephalitis is a thief – robbing families of their loves ones or, if they survive, the person they once knew.
'It steals memories, personalities, and abilities we take for granted: concentration, attention, thinking, judgement, and inhibition, to name a few.
'For many of our members there are additional challenges such as epilepsy and levels of fatigue so great that returning to a normal working life can be difficult.
'What Trevor and his family have done in support of The Encephalitis Society is fantastic on so many levels.
'Any money raised will help the society to provide support for our members and fund research into the condition as well as raise awareness among people who may never heard of Encephalitis before.'
There is still time to donate to the fund - visit www.justgiving.com/Robert-Groves8 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit www.encephalitis.info to find out more about Encephalitis and one-off dontations, regular giving and legacies.