THE family of a runner who died minutes after completing a marathon has finally been given a reason for his tragic death.
Kevin Paterson collapsed after crossing the finishing line of the Birmingham Great Run in October 2012.
His unexplained death came as a shock to his family, as the 36-year-old, of Seaham, had been in good health.
During an inquest into his death at Birmingham Coroner’s Court, a verdict of natural causes was recorded.
Kevin, whose wife Katy, 31, sister Kathryn Cowen, 39, and mum Patricia Toft, 72, attended the hearing, died of genetic heart defect arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC).
The disease affects the tissue which holds the heart muscle cells together, causing them to separate and replacing them with fat and scar tissue.
Kathryn, who has helped to raise more than £16,000 for the charity CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young) since her brother’s death, said the family now has a “sad sense” of closure after the inquest.
None of us expected how emotional it would be to hear all the details read through again after 16 months,” she said.
“It was more emotional than we were prepared for. It’s a relief to have the inquest finished, and know the reasons why he died, but it doesn’t make it any better.”