London Marathon: Cheers and tears for runners


Welfare charity Emunah is looking for a £35,000 running total, having raised more than £12,000 in sponsorship for its marathon team from its Pesach appeal to add to the amounts raised individually by a team of eight, plus a mini-marathon entrant.“We took a chance with this new approach in asking for support for our runners instead of our usual appeal, and it has worked well,” said Emunah director Deborah Nathan.

Participants included the charity’s events executive, Alison Cohen, 51, who came home in six hours and raised £6,000-plus.
“My husband has run the London Marathon twice for Emunah so now it was my turn,” she explained. “The first five miles were the hardest but the crowds are brilliant and they carry you through. I had a large contingent of family and friends that I recognised along the way.”

It was also a first London Marathon for Israel-based accountant Barry Sacher, 42, who was the first of the team to finish in 3:30. “I normally listen to music but there are so many people calling out your name and I didn’t want to miss out on any of it,” he said. “I looked at different causes and decided that this was the one that I wanted to support. When I get back to Israel, I would like to see Emunah’s work for myself. ”

Law student Charlotte Hamilton, 25, ran a time of 3:42, smashing her personal best. She removed her headphones at Tower Bridge “because the noise of the crowd was unbelievable. You realise you are not just running past an iconic landmark but that the crowds have such respect for what you have done, and how hard you have trained. There is a real sense of achievement.” She had held a brunch at her Elstree home to generate sponsorship.

“I had a wonderful childhood and am blessed with family and friends, so I wanted to help Emunah’s [‘at risk’] children to enjoy everything that I had.”

'I was in agony from 23 miles

Accountant Marc Jackson, 45, was enlisted by his wife, Wendy Jane, who heads the Emunah on eBay venture. After finishing in 4:19, he reflected: “The biggest challenge was to keep going when it got tough at around 20 miles — and then again at the end. My feet were a bit sore and I am looking forward to putting them up.”

Claire Gothelf, 51, who works for Leeds City Council, had been inspired to run by her mother, Margaret, a long-time supporter of the Tzvia Goren Emunah group. Completing the race in 5:12, “I was crying because I felt emotional”.

Great-grandmother and educator Flora Frank, 71, Yonatan Wilson, 22, and Uri Nakash, 23, also ran for Emunah as did JFS pupil David Stone, 13, who won the under-13 boys’ borough challenge and was sixth in the British Athletics Road Championship, running the three-mile course in just over 16 minutes.

The Kisharon squad, supporting children and adults with learning difficulties, earned £24,000, with the quickest being Josef Elias, 45 — a Swedish-born Israeli economist — who finished in four hours. He came to London with his friend and training partner, Richard Hunter, 45. Originally from Edgware, Mr Hunter is now CEO of the McCann Erickson advertising agency in Tel Aviv. His time was 4:25 and the duo hope to bring in at least £4,000. “I felt satisfied with what I had achieved but I’m still trying to decide whether it makes sense to run a marathon,” Mr Elias reflected.

Running for Kisharon for the third successive year, Shimon Lev, 41, had the incentive of representing a charity which supports a family member. “I am happy that I have set a personal best of 4:19,” the Edgware resident said.

First-time entrant Alex Neiss, 32, said: “I have always wanted to do the marathon, it was a personal goal. I am hoping to reach £4,500 in sponsorship. Kisharon is amazing because it helps children and adults who are less able. That is a beautiful thing to do. ”

Systems analyst Lewis Gelfand, 37, came home in under five hours. Banking analyst Bernard Fromson, 56, also broke the five-hour barrier. “I was cramping and in agony from 23 miles onwards,” he said. “The best bit was having tea from Kisharon at the finish line.” He will split the £5,000 proceeds with Stanmore Orthopaedic, where he underwent a hip replacement.

Accountant Lloyd Kafton, 29, who finished in 5:43, had his training schedule interrupted by the birth of a daughter 12 weeks ago. “I can now go into marathon retirement,” he said, having raised over £3,000.

A training injury also cramped the style of former Kisharon business manager Rachael Lindsay, 24. “I ran the whole way round, but very, very slowly,” she said. “Working for Kisharon meant I saw the talents of people with learning disabilities, so I knew that I must give it a go.”

More London Marathon pictures in our gallery

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive