Ilkley soldier’s dogged determination to run marathon

Marco Turnbull, from Ilkley, joined the Royal Engineer Regiment last year and is now running the London marathon to support SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity, as its youngest runner.

Marco, 19, is hoping to make good time around the 26 mile course and his training is going well, but it’s not all plain sailing:

Marco says:

“Honestly, I didn’t like running when I was at school in Giggleswick, but now I really can’t stand it. But things worth doing aren’t the easy things in life. I set myself this challenge and I want to raise funds for SSAFA, so I’m keeping at it and can’t wait for that finish line.

“Luckily, it is not too difficult to do the training as we get some time during our working day to maintain fitness levels. The trickiest bit is raising the funds for the charity.”

Marco, who is currently stationed at RAF Wyton in Cambridgeshire, needs to raise over £2,000 for SSAFA and he has thought up some ingenious ways to raise funds so far.

Marco says:

“Last weekend I went to Crufts to help SSAFA with its stand and got quite a few donations. I’m running a cute pet competition on Instagram, @ssafa_pets and I’ll be washing cars at work at RAF Wyton next week. My brothers are helping by taking bets on where I will be sick in the race. They have called it ‘The Green Mile’ because I always seem to puke when I’m running distance.

“I come from an Army family and have seen what PTSD and trauma sustained in service can do to individuals and their family. SSAFA is always there to help, so I want to raise money for them now, in case I or my friends need them in the future.”

If you would like to support Marco please donate at: or find him on Instagram

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By @Cobseo 54 years ago

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