Eddie Towler, 54, from Bradford, joined the 1st Battalion The Duke of Wellington’s Regiment aged 16 and served for 12 years, with postings to Northern Ireland, Canada, Norway, Kenya and various locations in the UK.
During lockdown, inspired by Captain Sir Tom Moore, himself a fellow former Duke, Eddie decided to complete a 33 mile run in aid of the Army Benevolent Fund.
Eddie completed this challenge with the aid of fellow retired veterans who joined for a few miles.
In April last year, Eddie ran 76 miles from Blackpool Tower to Halifax, finishing at the Dukes memorial in the town centre in aid of The Soldiers' Charity.
Now Eddie is running around 850 miles across 16 days, averaging around 60 miles a day, to raise money for The Army Benevolent Fund, the Multiple Sclerosis Society and The Motor Neurone Disease Association.
After Eddie left the Army he joined the police. It was in the police that Eddie met police officer Mark Cruise. Sadly Mark’s life was cut short by Motor Neurone Disease.
Eddie said “Cruisey was diagnosed with MND a number of years ago. He was incredibly brave but sadly lost the fight with this punishing disease in January this year. That is why I am also dedicating this run to Cruisey and the Motor Neurone Disease Association.”
On his support for the Multiple Sclerosis Society, Eddie said "One in 500 people suffer from MS and in the Dukes six of my friends who I served with over the years have fallen victim to it. That is why it is important to me to support the Multiple Sclerosis Society.”
The challenge started on May 13, and Eddie will be joined on part of the route by Nathan Bland, from Halifax, the grandson of former Duke Raymond Butterworth, who died recently.
Nathan suffered a horrific work-based accident aged 19 in which he lost his lower left leg and all the toes of his right foot.
Now 22, Nathan has recovered from his injuries and has a prosthetic leg.
With the continued support of his support worker Marcus Irvine, he has been caving and paddle boarding, climbed Pen-y-gent, completed the Three Peaks, and climbed Gordale Scar.