HEROIC policeman David Rathband joined former Olympian Steve Cram as he limbered up for the Sunderland City 10k.
The Northumbria officer, shot and blinded by gunman Raoul Moat almost a year ago, is hoping to raise significant funds for his charity, the Blue Lamp Foundation, by taking part in the event on June 26.
Pc Rathband – who started his career in Sunderland – said that running and raising money helped his rehabilitation.
“Hopefully, with the right help, I will get back to where I need to be,” he said at a launch event in Mowbray Park yesteday.
“It was as tough as you can imagine when I first signed the blind registration form.
“I can’t begin to tell people what it’s like.”
The Blue Lamp Foundation aims to provide financial help to emergency services staff injured in the line of duty.
In April, Pc Rathband completed one of his life’s ambitions, the gruelling 26-mile London Marathon.
Although the experience was tough, he said it was a huge boost for him personally to complete the course and put him in good stead for future events.
“I achieved something I never thought I would do,” he said.
“I said to myself I wouldn’t give up, and in the 10k I’ll be doing my best again.”
He also thanked Wearsiders who introduced themselves to him and offered their support.
Steve Cram said he was proud Pc Rathband will be taking part in the event.
“My dad was a policeman, and although you think of those things I wouldn’t say any of them ever expect to be in the situation David was in.
“It’s great that he is doing this and he’s had a massive impact.
“It’s hard enough going to do these events and he admits he isn’t a natural runner. It’s phenomenal.”
Before the main 10k run, the Sunderland Echo Junior Run will be held over 3km, giving youngsters aged eight to 15 the chance to be part of the event.
To apply for a place in the redspottedhanky.com Sunderland City 10k, go to www.sunderlandcity10k.com, call 525 5747 or follow www.twitter.com/sunderland10k.