Friends make marathon bid

Friends of a 25-year-old Southport man who died suddenly are taking up a marathon challenge in his memory.

Ben Watson, 33, and Gavin Copland, 25, plan to run the 26.2 miles to raise money for CRY – Cardiac Risk in the Young, in aid of Chris Haw.

Keen sportsman Chris from Landsdowne Road, collapsed and died on June 3, 2006, while working at Man to Man menswear store on Lord Street.

More than 700 people paid their respects to the popular Edge Hill University student at his funeral at Holy Trinity Church. Since then Chris’s family and friends have helped to fundraise for CRY.

Ben, who is the partner of Chris’s mum, legal secretary Lesley, said: “We’ve got Gold Bond places which means we have secured our places to run for CRY and we’ve got to raise £3,000 between us.”

CRY raises awareness about SADS (Sudden Adult Death Syndrome) and provides support and assistance to those who have suffered a loss through a network of affected families and counselling.

Ben said: “A lot of people asked after the funeral where they could give donations. Later we became aware of CRY , they provided comfort for the family.

“”When Chris died, post-mortem results could not find a cause of death. Unacceptable to Chris’s mum, Lesley contacted CRY. They provided information, support and arranged specialist screening for the immediate family.

“Test revealed Chris died from Brugada syndrome, a hereditary condition that could have been realised by Electrocardiogram. They have supported and medically tested our family, we were relieved Chris’s siblings Jack and Jeni had not inherited the condition.”

Hyperdrug Pharmaceuticals company director Ben, who completed the Amsterdam Marathon in 2004, said: “It takes a lot of time to get ready for a marathon so we are training now, but the hard work will all be worthwhile if I succeed in raising £1,500 for CRY.”

He will be spurred on by friend Gavin, a politics teacher, who knew the young Southport Amateurs and Dell Rangers player, and wants to support the charity by running on April 13, 2008.

To sponsor Ben, visit For more information on CRY visit or call 01737 363 222.