Young cyclist’s charity trek comes to city

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Fundraiser Jonjo Heuerman at Goodison Park. Pic by Olivia Swayne Atherton © JMU Journalism

Fundraiser Jonjo Heuerman at Goodison Park. Pic by Olivia Swayne Atherton © JMU Journalism

Everton and Liverpool fans came together to show support to a 13-year-old boy doing an 800-mile Premiership challenge ride to raise money for Cancer Research UK.

Jonjo Heuerma from Dartford, Kent is cycling to all 20 clubs in the Barclays Premier League over a two-week period. The passionate West Ham fan,fundraises in honour of footballing legend, the late Bobby Moore, and his nanny Lyn, who both died of bowel cancer.

The challenge started at Newcastle United on February 14th and it will end at Upton Park on February 28th. Jonjo will hold an ‘Angel Ceremony’, reading out the names of all the “angels” – loved ones who have died from cancer” – printed on his football shirt.

His mum Donna told JMU Journalism: “His shirt has names from all over the world of other people who have lost the fight. We’re behind him in a support van protecting him because of other motorists. We’re passing out bits of chocolate and energy drinks and cheering him along because he has been getting very, very tired. “

Showing their appreciation for his quest, the Cancer Research Liverpool Team and Merseyside Police greeted him when he arrived in the city last week. PC Greg Dutton, who was due to travel with Jonjo onto Manchester, told JMU Journalism: “I only found out about this through sheer luck on Twitter. I heard and they were asking for a Merseyside office and nobody responded and I wasn’t going to let him do it on his own.”

After years of fundraising, he has gathered support not just online but he has attracted celebrity support, from footballing brothers Rio and Anton Ferdinand, Steven Gerrard, Cilla Black, and West Ham vice-chairman, Baroness Karren Brady.

Jonjo with Cancer Research Liverpool team and Merseyside Police. Pic by Olivia Swayne Atherton © JMU Journalism

Jonjo with Cancer Research Liverpool team and Merseyside Police. Pic by Olivia Swayne Atherton © JMU Journalism

When asked about the backing, Jonjo told JMU Journalism: “It’s really good. I wouldn’t be here without the motivation from the messages on Facebook and seeing everyone here today is quite special and that’s what makes me want to keep going forward.”

Before setting off to Anfield, Jonjo found out he had passed the £200,000 fundraising mark.

He told JMU Journalism: “It makes me feel very special. Every £10,000 I raise I save a life and now I know I have saved another one.”

 

About Olivia Swayne-Atherton, JMU Journalism