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Dad’s courage inspires son’s charity challenges

A trio of physical endurance tests awaits a Maidstone man to salute his courageous dad.

From Press releases - 8 April 2014 12:00 AM

A trio of physical endurance tests awaits a Maidstone man to salute his courageous dad.

Tony Rogers, a project manager for UK Power Networks, saw his dad’s mobility significantly reduced by Guillain-Barre syndrome, a rare illness which attacks the nervous system.

With the right care, Ian Rogers’ condition improved and his determination to lead a normal life again has inspired Tony to support Guillain-Barre and Associated Inflammatory Neuropathies (GAIN), the charity which helps sufferers and their families.

Tony, 43, who lives in the Downswood area and whose dad lives in Lenham, said: “It hit my dad hard. He’s not completely over it and never will be. It affected everything right down to the muscles in his eyelids and he was practically paralysed for more than a month.

“The illness can have a devastating effect on people’s lives, including those around them. It is relatively uncommon and funding into research is minimal so I have decided to undertake some ‘torture’ to raise cash for a charity which supports sufferers.

“I decided 2014 would be the year that I challenged myself physically and mentally, while hopefully making some money for a worthwhile cause.”

Tony is tackling his first London Marathon on Sunday (April 13), the London-to-Brighton bike ride on June 15 and a military-style obstacle course, Tough Mudder, on July 12. With the support of colleagues, he has already smashed his £500 fund-raising target.

As a regular race marshal at the London Marathon, Tony is more used to spectating on the red route out of Greenwich Park than competing in the race.

He said: “The training was going all right but during a long training session recently I injured my calf and hamstring. I’m not going to break any records - I’m just hoping to get round and enjoy the amazing atmosphere. It’s brilliant to be part of it.”

Tony’s ‘for one year only’ fund-raising page is at:

GAIN supports those affected by GBS, CIDP and associated inflammatory neuropathies. The charity provides information and support to sufferers and their families, raises awareness of the illness among medical professionals and funds research.