Marathon man Gary McKee tops £1m mark after completing amazing fundraising feat

A CUMBRIAN Rugby League stalwart has completed an amazing – and gruelling –  charity fundraising feat.

Gary McKee, 53, from the National Conference League club Wath Brow Hornets, spent 2022 running a marathon every day – while holding down a full-time job at the Sellafield nuclear site.

He completed the remarkable mission with a 26.2-mile New Year’s Eve jaunt which finished in his home town of Cleator Moor.

That took McKee, not surprisingly nicknamed ‘Marathon Man’, to a total of more than 9,560 miles in 2022 – the equivalent of running from the UK to Australia.

He was joined on his December 20 outing by another Rugby League fundraising legend, Kevin Sinfield.

Over the year, McKee raised more than £1 million for his two chosen charities, Macmillan Cancer Support and Hospice At Home West Cumbria – and donations are still being made.

He started fundraising in memory of his father Victor, who was diagnosed with lung cancer in 1997 and died in 2003 from an unrelated illness.

McKee’s previous charity challenges include a cycle ride through Brazil, a climb up Kilimanjaro, a trek in New Zealand and a run from Land’s End to John O’Groats.

He has also run the Coast to Coast cross-country path and completed the 113-mile Fred Whitton route through the Lake District in less than 24 hours.

After running 100 marathons in 100 days in 2017, McKee completed 110 in 110 days in 2021 to mark Macmillan’s 110th anniversary.

“I’m lucky enough to be able to take on a physical challenge of this scale,” he said.

“Every day I think about all the people going through cancer treatment who face their own physical and emotional challenges.

“If I can support people going through cancer and other life-limiting illnesses while inspiring people to get out there and fundraise themselves, then every marathon I do every day is worth the effort.”

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