Michael Gillespie, known as Mikey, was a “fit, healthy, non-smoker” when he passed away aged 43 following an 18-month battle with the disease.
Last July, on the one-year anniversary of his death, Mikey’s brother-in-law and best friend Darren Murray of Maddiston, successfully cycled the equivalent height of Mount Everest by completing 31 ascents of the ski road to Cairngorm Mountain to raise money for head, neck and mouth cancer research.
Darren was supported along the way by fellow members of The Braes City Rouleurs – and the group has planned another daring event to raise money for Oracle Cancer Trust.
The 12-strong team – hailing from Falkirk, California, Brightons, Redding, Polmont, Glasgow and Aviemore – will cycle from Mikey’s graveside in Cumbernauld to Loch Morlich, near Aviemore, where the dad-of-two loved to spend his spare time.
The Mikey to Morlich ride on August 14 will involve almost 9000ft of climbing and take around 11 hours to complete.
It will act as the flagship event in a fundraising fortnight organised by Ineos operations engineer Darren, his wife, Eve, and Mikey’s wife, Suzy.
The trio’s Move 4 Mikey fundraiser will run from August 1-14 as a series of unique challenges aimed at promoting an active and fun lifestyle while raising awareness of and much-needed funds for Oracle Cancer Trust.
Family, friends and members of the public are being invited to devise their own fundraiser via the Move 4 Mikey platform.
Darren said: “With the riders from The Braes City Rouleurs who helped me ‘Everest’ Cairngorm last year, we have decided to undertake an equally arduous team ride.
“We plan to set off at 7am and hope to arrive at Loch Morlich around 6pm.
“Overall we hope to raise £10,000 though Move 4 Mikey, so if anyone would be kind enough to donate to the cause, do their own challenge or even cheer, or peep if they see us on the road, it would be a great boost and much appreciated.
“Head, neck and mouth cancer is the UK's sixth fastest-growing cancer yet only receives 2 per cent of the funding in research, hence why we want to help.
“In addition to our ride we have friends, family and once strangers, now friends, planning a myriad of challenges and fundraisers this coming August.
“Some of the challenges being undertaken include daily 5ks, a hike around Glasgow's mural trail, bake sales, car boot sales, golf marathons and even an online music concert.
“We aim for it to be as diverse and inclusive as possible. We encourage everyone and anyone to get involved.
“Albeit inspired and in memory of Mikey, this is about helping people survive cancer and celebrate the short lives we lead.
“Mikey may be gone but his memory and joy for life lives on with us.”
To make a donation to the Mikey to Morlich event, click here.