Tuesday, February 27, 2024

SUPERHERO SWIM RAISES THOUSANDS OF POUNDS

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THERE were blue skies for those taking part in the ‘Dash for Dougie’ to raise funds for the Ulster Hospital in memory of Comber man, Steven Dugan.

The superhero swim took place on June 25 on what would have been Steven’s 34th birthday. Steven passed away in December after a short illness.

His mum, Kim Armstrong, decided to organise the swim to raise money for the emergency department and intensive care unit at the hospital, where Steven was cared for before he passed away.

Kim said the event was ‘absolutely brilliant’ and said Steven must have been watching from above after the sun came out after heavy rain.

“It was brilliant, absolutely brilliant. Honestly, I was sitting in my friend’s van at 2.45pm and I could have cried. I thought nobody was going to turn up as the rain was horrendous,” she said.

“At 2.50pm, the rain stopped, the sun came out and we had blue sky for two hours and it was beautiful.

So many people turned up, it was unbelievable, absolutely incredible.

“I think he’d be so proud, and I think he’d have had a quare laugh at all his friends running in all dressed as superheroes. He’d be looking down saying ‘there’s my mad mother again, don’t know what she’s going to be at next’.

“He’d be so proud and he had to be looking down those two hours as we had good weather before we were hit by thunder and lightning on the way home.”

Kim has managed to raise, at time of print, £4,000 and wishes to thank everyone for their support over the past six months.

“We’ve just hit the £4,000 mark for donations as well with a few more bits and pieces to come in,” she said.

“I can’t believe it, I’m going to keep it running for another few weeks. I got two big cheques from the bank so once all the money has come through I’ll run up to the hospital with it.

“I want to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported me in the ‘Dash for Dougie’ and in the last six months since he’s passed away. It was actually six months on Friday (June 30) there, everybody has been amazing and I just want to say thank you to friends, family and everybody who just supported us.

“I might make it an annual thing, now I’ve got the big banner made, we’ll see. Even do it for different charities each year, but we’ll see.”

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