STEVEN Smith has completed the London Marathon on his own two feet – despite once being told he would never walk again.
The 57 year-old Wellesbourne resident achieved the phenomenal feat in nine hours and 17 minutes, raising valuable funds in aid of the Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation (nsif) – a charity devoted to finding a cure for paralysis caused by spinal cord injury.
Steven, who owns Hunscote Stud, was attacked at his holiday home in the south of France in 2011 when armed men broke into his property. To escape them, he jumped out of a first floor window, fell into a ravine and broke his spine.
Steven told The Observer: “When I was attacked I thought I’d been left for dead. I was then told I’d never walk again. Every step has been a physical and mental challenge to get to where I am today.
“Words cannot describe the joy I experienced finishing the London Marathon – the elation at crossing the finishing line is all consuming. I’m ecstatic, exhausted and enormously thankful for all of the support I’ve received from friends, family and well-wishers and looking forward to putting my feet up for a few days.”
Steven stunned doctors with his recover over the past six years and now walks with the aid of a stick.
Although he still experiences a host of complications as a result of his injury he had been aiming to complete the marathon in 14 hours – a target he smashed on the streets of the capital.
Mike Milner, CEO of nsif, said: “We are enormously grateful to Steven for taking on this incredible challenge to raise funds for pioneering research to find a cure for spinal cord injury. Steven has shown remarkable courage, strength and tenacity throughout his recovery. His completion of the London Marathon is a momentous achievement and gives hope to thousands of people living with spinal cord injury”.
Visit http://bit.ly/2mLBL8S to support Steven’s fundraising for nsif.