Saddleworth Hills witness the first Mil Race to commemorate the life of Firefighter Dan Lee

45 runners, and even two dogs, braved the cold and windy weather in the Saddleworth hills to participate in the first-ever Mil Race to commemorate the tragic loss of Firefighter Dan Lee.

The event took place on March 26th and was organised to raise money for Dan Lee’s family. Lee, Watch Manager at Agecroft station, worked for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) for over 16 years until his untimely death last August.

Colleagues from GMFRS, the Service’s Armed Forces Network, and supporters from outside the organisation came together to honour Dan’s memory, support his family, and celebrate his military background.

The race, which was held over a gruelling nine-mile route, raised over £2,100 for Dan’s young family.

The route was based on an old course used by the Parachute Regiment for training, where they would complete a test march in under one hour and 50 minutes, carrying equipment and a rifle.

It forms part of the final two months of the Royal Marines’ 32-week training program.

Runners were divided into two groups, the “Clean Fatigue” group, and the “Loaded Category” group.

The Clean Fatigue group was won by Simon Wood, Service Development Project Lead at GMFRS, who completed the race in 1 hour and 15 minutes.

The Loaded Category was won by Stephen Hunter, a serving Royal Marine, who completed the race in 1 hour and 38 minutes, carrying a minimum weight of thirty-five pounds on his back.

Dan’s fiancé Simone and GMFRS Chief Fire Officer Dave Russel presented the winners and runners-up with their trophies.

Group Manager Jean-Pierre Helliwell, one of the lead organisers of the event, expressed his gratitude for the support received from colleagues, other fire and rescue services, military groups, and the general public.

He stated that “The support has been incredible, not just from colleagues in Greater Manchester but also from other fire and rescue services, military groups and the general public.

“It was quite a challenging route, and the conditions were harsh to say the least, but the atmosphere of the event and seeing people’s passion and support for Dan’s family was wonderful to see.”

Dan Lee was a well-respected member of the GMFRS, and his untimely death last August was a shock to his colleagues and loved ones.

The Mil Race was an opportunity for them to remember him, celebrate his life, and support his family.

The success of the event and the amount of money raised is a testament to the impact that Dan had on the people around him and the lasting legacy that he leaves behind.

Donations can still be given on the Go Fund Me page set up for the event by clicking here.

The support of the participants, organisers, and donors shows the power of a community coming together to celebrate life and support those left behind.


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