Little Jessica runs and runs in memory of her Mummy

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PLUCKY five-year-old Jessica Halliday ran the Huddersfield Race for Life in memory of her mum who passed away in May after battling cancer.

The youngster completed the 5k (3.1 miles) with her mum’s friends from Siddal Primary School.

Justine Halliday had battled bravely against breast cancer and died aged 39.

The mum-of-three also left husband, Mark, Chelsea, 11, and Aiden, eight.

Despite battling her illness, the former childminder regularly helped out at the school.

She previously served as a school governor for 18 months and was a popular figure among the school community.

Mr Halliday said mums who had children at the school and who were friends with Justine asked him if they could run the race in memory of Justine.

“Jessica was with me at the time and asked if she could run also and it escalated from there,” said Mr Halliday.

“She went training for a couple of weeks beforehand running and walking and was flagging a bit at the end of the race but she got through it.

“She did really well, raising more than £700 and it was a way of keeping Justine’s memory alive.”

He said he was grateful to Sarah Metcalfe, Pepper Watford, Emma Wisniowski and Joanne Braithwaite for encouraging Jessica and their fundraising efforts.

They all wore tops with a photo of Justine.

The event, at Leeds Road playing fields, atracted 3,500 runners and raised £250,000 for Cancer Research UK.

Mr Halliday, of Siddal, Halifax, said he and his children were getting on with life as best they could and he has returned to work part-time as a transport manager for Southowram poultry firm Peter Gradon.

Anyone who wishes to support Jessica’s efforts can still do so at: http://www.raceforlifesponsorme.org/jessica halliday1802

On Sunday, Halifax will stage a Race for Life event for the first time.

The 5k race takes place at Savile Park from 10am and around 2,200 women and girls will be taking part.

Several companies, including the Halifax Courier, have entered teams.