Posted: 18.10.21 at 16:54 by Tommy Joyce
A dad from Tooting is beginning a monumental bike ride in memory of his son who died this year.
James Kennedy, as well as his team, will have already raised an enormous £70,000 in memory of little Leo Kennedy - and now he will begin a 700km bike ride.
James and his partner Kate had twins born at just 23 weeks, and they were cared for by the neonatal team at St George's Hospital. Max was able to join the family home at six months, but sadly, his brother Leo passed away earlier this year.
The cycling team, dubbed Team Lions, will be riding from Barcelona to St Tropez, covering around 150km each day. Quite some tasks ahead, especially considering not all of them are used to cycling long distances.
The money will be going towards First Touch - a charity that supports families that are going through the experience of having a prematurely born child.
James said: “Both Kate and I are simply lost for words at the amazing kindness and generosity that everyone has showed. When we doubled the target to £60K I really thought we wouldn’t get anywhere near that mark, but somehow we’ve managed to pass that today.”
“I read every single message from each donation and it gives me great motivation for the ride."
Neonatal Consultant, Dr Sijo Francis said: “James and Kate have gone through an incredible trauma but have turned that around into something very positive that will benefit the care we provide to other children for years to come.
"They are simply inspiring and on behalf of everyone at St George’s I want to thank them for what they are doing and wish everyone on Team Lions the best of luck.”
The money raised currently stands at over £71,000 and counting. To donate to Team Lions' cause, and keep up to date with how they are getting on, go to their Just Giving page.