Glenswilly man Joe Gibbons has two extra causes to be smiling as his New York Metropolis marathon fundraiser involves a detailed.
Not solely did Joe run the world-famous course in underneath three hours, one yr after chemotherapy, however he just lately found he has set a private finest at 2:52:26.
Joe can also be nearing a €25,000 complete for his chosen charities – Most cancers Care West Assist Centre Donegal and Pieta. The GoFundMe web page shall be formally closed this Friday night.
“By no means in my wildest goals did I feel I’d be wherever near 25,000,” Joe tells Donegal Every day.
“I’m completely blown away. After I began, I believed we’d get two or three thousand, however while you ask the individuals of Donegal to donate, they positively do dig deep.”
Joe’s marathon PB was one more chink in his armour after an unforgettable few weeks. He did the Belfast marathon in Could 2022 in a time of two:52:42, however the 16-second acquire in New York was an additional triumph as he returned to type after sickness.
For Joe, it’s been ‘onwards and upwards’ after a troublesome yr of most cancers remedy. He was recognized with lymphoma in the summertime of 2022 and accomplished chemo by Christmas.
“From my viewpoint, I need to let individuals know that there’s life after chemo, I’m in remission and that’s nearly as good a bit of stories that you may get,” he stated.
Joe’s fundraising marketing campaign was a robust motivating issue that bought him to the beginning line on Staten Island on fifth November. And when instances bought powerful in the course of the race, he knew he had a whole bunch of supporters again dwelling.
The New York Metropolis route is infamous for grinding inclines up bridges and hills on Fifth Avenue.
“After I was getting it tight after 25 miles, I believed half of Donegal is monitoring me right here, and if my time drops they’ll be saying he’s gone!” Joe stated.
Joe stated the environment in New York was unbelievable, with throngs of individuals lining the streets and energetic bands conserving the tempo up.
“I can truthfully say I by no means checked out a watch much less in my life, I ran with a smile from ear to ear and took in top-of-the-line atmospheres I’ve ever endured,” Joe stated.
“Despite the fact that the environment was unbelievable, the physique goes to begin shouting again after 2.5 hours. I used to be anxious at one stage nevertheless it was a matter of holding on and steering dwelling.”
Maybe it was Joe’s ‘fortunate marathon high’ that gave him the enhance too.
The vest, made by O’Reilly Sports activities in 2019, reveals the smiling face of Joe’s late good friend and rally legend Manus Kelly. Joe wore the vest throughout his first-ever marathon in Dublin, which he did in help of Manus’ spouse Bernie and their youngsters.
Joe stated that Manus, and his good friend Paul Sweeney who handed in October, have been probably watching over him and “having some stark phrases” when his legs have been aching on the stretch up Fifth Avenue.
“Any person was guiding me anyway, and bought me over the end line,” he stated.
Joe’s help crew in New York included his spouse Susanna and their associates Paul and Geraldine Rodgers and Tommy and Louise Duddy. At dwelling, Joe and Susanna’s boys, Jack (8) and six-year-old Oisin have been cheering him all the way in which and gave him a heroes’ welcome on his return dwelling on Wednesday final.
There are only a few days remaining for individuals to donate to ‘Joe’s New York Marathon’ GoFundMe in support of Most cancers Care West Assist Centre Donegal and Pieta. If you want to help the causes, please go to: https://www.gofundme.com/f/joes-new-york-marathon
Joe’s marathon journey reveals there’s life after chemo was final modified: November 14th, 2023 by