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Pictured, from left: Lizzie, Mark and Emel

Relatives join forces to help boost Harrison’s Fund at Surrey Half Marathon

Four members of the same family are all donning their trainers to run this year’s Surrey Half Marathon in aid of Harrison’s Fund. 

Husband and wife, Mark and Lizzie Holifeld and Emel Holifield, all from Oxford, are running on Sunday, 10th March, with Mark’s cousin Maxine Foster from Horsham whose son, Austin, was diagnosed with Duchenne in 2015. 

Harrison’s Fund was set up in 2012 and funds research into Duchenne – a rare genetic condition which causes the muscles in the body to waste away. 

Harrison’s Fund’s goal is to get as much money as possible into the hands of the world’s best researchers, who are working to find a cure for Duchenne. The charity is currently funding 16 research projects in the US and the UK. 

Lizzie, 30, said: “We are all looking forward to the challenge and being there together to raise money for this fantastic cause. The team spirit is really what gets you through as well, of course, hearing all the cheerers and seeing our gorgeous Austin and his sister, Ava too. 

“We started our training at the end of December when we were on holiday in California, and although it’s a slightly different weather, we’ve are committed to keeping it up in the UK. 

“We know that Harrison’s Fund are working so hard to raise as much money as possible for researchers to put an end to this horrible disease and we want to help! It truly is a fantastic charity and we feel honored to be part of the team taking on the Surrey Half.” 

This isn’t the first time the husband and wife team have fundraised for the charity. They have raised £2,864 so far running the Oxford Town and Gown 10k, the Brighton Marathon and the Blenheim palace 7k in the past. 

Emel, 46, who is married to Maxine’s cousin, added: “Austin’s diagnosis was a shock to all of us. I have a daughter only one year older than him and I could not imagine how they feel. But Maxine and her husband, Steve, have shown incredible courage and strength to fight with it to give their son and the other children hope. 

“I am looking forward to running in a large group with my family and it’s always fun to see other fellow runners, I just hope I can go the distance and the weather stays mild and dry!” 

The Surrey Half Marathon takes in 13.1miles of Guildford and Woking countryside. 

Laura Morgan, events fundraiser at Harrison’s Fund said: “It’s great to have families run together as we are a real family-orientated charity and Max and her family have been such huge supporters of ours over the years it’s a testament to her commitment that they are back once more putting themselves through the paces for us.” 

  To support the family visit give.everydayhero.com and if you live in the Guildford or Woking area why not go out and cheer them and the other runners on! 

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