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Hull veteran, Lee takes on year-long challenge for The Not Forgotten!

Lee runs 3k-a-day for a year to support his fellow servicemen and women

A former serviceman is running and walking 3k-a-day for a year to support The Not Forgotten!

Hull-based plumber, Lee Turnbull, 45 started his fundraising challenge in November and has already raised almost £2,000 while travelling over 300km. By the end of his challenge, he will have travelled over 1,000km.

Lee started the challenge after wanting to do something positive during lockdown. He said:

“When I first set about doing a fundraising challenge, it was about being more active during lockdown, and getting myself physically and mentally motivated.

“I didn’t want to go too far, and not be able to stick to my goal, so I chose 3k-a-day, so I could do little and often.

“The support I’ve had so far has been amazing. People are raising money who I haven’t heard from for 30 years. People I knew from school, other servicemen, local businesses, and customers are all tracking the progress and showing their support.”

Lee, who served in The Royal Corps of Signals said that as an ex-serviceman, his personal experiences drew him towards supporting The Not Forgotten with their work:

He added: “Initially, when I was first deciding I needed to do something, I wanted to do it for a charity to give it a foundation to motivate myself. I was speaking to a friend of mine, who was also an ex-serviceman, and they brought up The Not Forgotten.

“They are smaller than a lot of other Armed Forces charities but still help thousands of beneficiaries every year because they spend as much money as possible on things that will directly help ex-servicemen, and I wanted to see the money I raised get used well.

“From my personal experience of leaving the forces, it’s very isolating in the sense that, you’re not used to living in society in the way that normal people do. If you have extra issues, whether that’s injuries or illness, then you’re faced with even more problems and it’s harder to make that transition.

“You hear these horrible stories about ex-colleagues on the streets, and there is a real need there for someone to give these guys the right support.”

Lee said starting the challenge in winter was tough, and can be a ‘pain in the neck’ after a long shift at work, but that overall, it’s been a positive experience for him and his family.

He added: “In the current situation, there isn’t much going on. It’s been good for our mental health. If anybody wanted to get involved, if people want to do it once a week, once a month, it’s doable.

“My misses comes out for a lot of the walks with me, and the kids come out with me as well for some of them as well

“Running through winter wasn’t great, but when servicemen and women like myself get deployed, they don’t choose how long for, when they leave, and what’s going to happen to them.

“Doing this has given me a chance to give a little bit of thought to our Armed Forces every day. Thankfully, we don’t have any world wars, but there are still a lot of people who give a lot physically and mentally and have given more than me.”

Lee is over a third of the way through his challenge, and hopes to keep building momentum for his fundraiser by engaging local sportspeople and sports clubs.

If you would like to donate to Lee’s fundraiser, you can do so by clicking here.