Barnham siblings’ gruelling charity challenge for grandad

Left, Eva Chapman, nine, pictured with her brother Alex, ten, and their grandfather, Gordon Chapman, 81 SUS-141118-095346001
Left, Eva Chapman, nine, pictured with her brother Alex, ten, and their grandfather, Gordon Chapman, 81 SUS-141118-095346001
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ADMIRATION and love for their poorly grandad inspired two Barnham children to push themselves to the limit in a fundraising triathlon on Sunday (November 16).

Alex Chapman, ten, and his younger sister and Eva, nine, battled against exhaustion and driving rain to complete their triathlon at Murrells Field, in their home village.

The dynamic duo completed 21 lengths at Inspire Felpham leisure centre, before cycling several miles back to their local field to complete a tricky set of running and cycling laps around the park.

The event was organised entirely by Alex and Eva, with support from their mum, Jane, and raised and impressive £256 for the British Kidney Patient Association – a charity which is providing vital support for their seriously-ill grandad, Gordon Chapman, 81.

Gordon has been dealing with end stage renal failure and requires three treatments of exhausting dialysis a week, with each visit often taking more than three hours to complete.

Alex said: “Grandad is really brave considering what he has to go through, having lots of different needles and tubes put 
in him and having to just sit there.

“I feel really sorry for him that he has to go through all of this.”

The fundraising idea came earlier this year after Eva wrote a speech about why her grandad was her hero as part of a school project.

She said: “He is my hero because he goes through so much and can’t do anything about it. That’s why I wrote the speech. It makes me feel really proud of him and it makes me feel lucky that I am not going through what he is going through.”

The pair raised the money by visiting neighbours, friends and family, as well as selling their own Christmas cards.

Eva added that she wanted to thank everyone who sponsored them, saying: “Everyone has been really nice. It’s great that we have got so much money and I don’t think that we could have done it without all their help and support.”

Speaking of the triathlon, Alex said: “It was very tiring, particularly the running, because we had to try and keep going while it was raining. I’m really happy we did it.”

Proud mum Jane said: “Kidney disease does not have the high profile that others do but it is a terminal illness and cannot always be saved by transplant. Dialysis is the only other treatment and takes its toll on the body.

“Their grandad is very poorly but very proud of them.”

Those wishing to donate to the youngsters can do so by visiting www.justgiving.com/jane-chapman8