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2013-05-22T11:00:00 Updated 2015-02-19T00:39:16

Doc completes charity run

West Ham United medical officer Dr Richard Weiler completed an amazing 30-mile run to work on Sunday.

Dr Weiler left home at 6am before running across London to the Boleyn Ground, arriving at 11.30am - well in time to grab his medical bag ahead of the Barclays Premier League fixture with Reading.

The popular 'Doc' completed his solo jog for the charity Caudwell Children, of which he is a trustee. Caudwell Children provide family support services, equipment, treatment and therapies for disabled children and their families across the UK. The charity also runs Enable Sport programme for talented disabled athletes and Destination Dreams holiday for children fighting life-threatening conditions.

The father-of-three was joined for the final few hundred metres of his run by his wife, children and Hammers youngster Dylan Tombides, who inspired Dr Weiler to run to work during his treatment after being diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2011.

Looking remarkably fresh, Dr Weiler told West Ham TV of his pride and happiness at completing such a feat, raising tens of thousands of pounds for a charity close to his heart in the process.

"I decided to do the run for Caudwell Children, which is a great charity," he confirmed. "Dylan and I cooked up the plan as he has been through a lot of challenges over the last couple of years and we thought it was about time that I put my feet where my mouth was and took up a challenge myself, so I decided to do it.

"I'd not run a marathon or a race before, so it was a heck of a long way, but it had to be a challenge otherwise people would not have been inspired to sponsor me. It's such a great cause, it really is, so I have to say 30 miles is a piece of cake when you compare it to what Dylan has been through and the challenges the kids at Caudwell Children face.

"I took in a few sights during my run. I went past Buckingham Palace and took a few photos on my phone and then Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Nelson's Column, all the way along the River Thames and then up towards the Olympic Park."

Dr Weiler said he hopes his run will inspire others to become more active and lead healthier lifestyles - just as Caudwell Children does for the youngsters who are helped by the charity.

"I do a lot of work promoting health, writing lots of papers and doing research. Everybody can get a little taste of leading a healthy lifestyle. I'm not saying people should run 30 miles, but just doing a bit of walking every day would be great.

"The charity is very close to my heart, supporting children with disabilities to help get them mobility aids and specialist treatments that they cannot get anywhere else. They also run a great programme called Destination Dreams for children with terminal illnesses, looking after kids and their families and taking them on very special holidays.

"There are loads of other great things that the charity does and hopefully West Ham fans will become more aware of them as well."

Dr Richard Weiler

Tombides, who met Dr Weiler at the Champions sculpture before completing the walk to the Boleyn Ground with him, was full of praise for someone he knows very well.

The striker said: "The Doc made it look so easy. He didn't even look like he was sweating at the end of it. He was so full of energy! It's an unbelievable achievement and he told me he had to walk parts of it to slow down!

"I have spent a lot of time with the Doc over the last two years, obviously not for the greatest of reasons, but nevertheless he is a fantastic guy and what he did on Sunday just showed what he is all about.

"He went to a lot of effort that he didn't have to go to to raise money for the charity, so it means a lot to me and my family."

Caudwell Children fundraising manager Nikki Samsa thanked Dr Weiler for his effort in raising money that will make differences to the lives of many youngsters.

"It's fantastic for us. We are a national charity but with quite a local feel so we help children throughout the UK. Richard's run will make a difference to a lot of disabled children who are living in or on the margins of poverty. It's a huge thing that he has done and it will make a massive difference.

"It was astounding. Richard gives us a lot of support as a trustee, but for him to get up as early as he did, run to work and then do a full day at West Ham was amazing. He looked like he could have run another 30 miles. It was phenomenal.

"The money Richard has raised will truly change children's lives across the UK. He will be providing therapy tricycles and wheelchairs for children with autism that will change their lives beyond a doubt."

For more details about Caudwell Children and how to get involved in fundraising, click here. To sponsor Dr Weiler, click here.

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