Bonnybridge dad’s got a mountain to climb

Mike Blake and son Sean (4), who survived Luekaemia
Mike Blake and son Sean (4), who survived Luekaemia

A doting dad is gearing up to tackle one of the world’s tallest mountains to help kids with cancer - after his own son beat the disease.

Mike Blake will scale Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania as part of an ambitious programme of fundraising that also includes cycling from London to Amsterdam.

The energetic 38-year-old from Bonnybridge was inspired to raise money for children with leukaemia following the experience of son Sean, who was just four years old when he was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia.

Happily, the St Joseph’s Primary School pupil, now aged seven, has made a full recovery and inherited his dad’s love of the great outdoors.

Mike said: “Sean was in the Schiehallion Ward at Yorkhill Sick Kids, and I said to him then that, when he got better, we would go and climb the real thing. And we did just that last year.”

The Falkirk Herald last spoke to the Blakes in November 2011, when Sean was named as one of 22 UK ‘Little Stars’ – ambassadors chosen by Cancer Research UK to promote the strength of youngsters with the disease.

Now Mike, with the support of his wife Claire, is gearing up to tackle Mount Kilimanjaro on behalf of the Children with Cancer UK charity.

He and his fundraising partner Darren Woodcock need to raise a minimum of £7000 to take part in the climb, due to take place in October, and the duo are actively looking for the support of local businesses.

Mike added: “Even if the people reading this story could donate just £1, that would be a massive help.”

Mike, who works in sales management, stressed that he is spending around £800 of his own money to cover administration costs and that all the money raised will be going to the charity, which is organising the climb.

He added: “I chose Children with Cancer UK as they focus their work on helping young people with leukaemia.”

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