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Meet your 2023 Great North Run team

We are proud to introduce TOFS 2023 Great North Run team. Please read their stories and give the a sponsor.

Running for TOFS are:

  • Janet Wills
  • Laura Hammond
  • Clare Perez
  • Emma Hardman
  • Samantha Ewart
  • Dave Larby
  • Liam Kenyon

Meet your runners!

Laura Hammond

Hi, my name is Laura and I’m running the Great North Run this year on behalf of our little boy Seb and a charity very close to our hearts – TOFS.

Seb was born with a lifelong condition called Oesophageal Atresia & Tracheal Oesophageal Fistula (OA/TOF).

Essentially this means he was born unable to swallow.

The hardest part with this condition has always been the fear of the unknown so having the support and advice from the TOFs charity and parents in a similar situation to ourselves has been invaluable to our journey.

I know as the years go on, we will continue to lean on this fantastic network of people to help us through trickier times so donating anything you can will go such a long way to help this hugely personal and worthwhile cause.

Here’s hoping I’m able to make it over the finish line!

laura hammond

Dave Larby

At the age of 66, I am running the Great North Run for the first time in my life to raise money for TOFS. 

TOFS gave us so much support and hope when our son Thomas was born with this rare birth defect. We heard the devastating news that our precious new-born baby had OA/TOF shortly after his birth. We had never heard of the condition but will always be grateful to the midwives and team at Ashington hospital in Northumberland who diagnosed it very quickly.

Thomas was taken away to Newcastle in a special paediatric ambulance and the amazing team at the Newcastle RVI operated on him at 12 hours old. While at the hospital, I was given a TOFS leaflet about the condition. 

Membership of TOFS was at times literally a lifeline for us: from that first bewildering moment of coming to terms with the news, the charity provided us with ongoing information, support and reassurance through all the tough times of the initial surgical repair, trying to breast feed an OA/TOF baby in intensive care, numerous hospital admissions with pneumonia and other illnesses, weaning a baby prone to choking, starting school, having a surgical stretch and more.

Thomas is now a fit, healthy 28 year old ski instructor, something we could never have imagined in those traumatic early years. We always said we would do something to pay back for all the help we received and so, finally after 28 years, I am doing it!

Dave Larby

Emma Hardman

My long time friend’s son was born with OA/TOF alongside CHD. So I’m raising money to support the TOFS charity who are working hard to support the lifelong care for those born with this rare disease. 

Liam Kenyon

 I am running the Great North Run in support of a family friend, Neil Johns. Neil’s son was born with OA/TOF. 

Any donations would be much appreciated.  

Samantha Ewart

I am running the Great North Run in support of TOFS. 

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