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Marathon Man Dan Lincoln’s in it for long run

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When Dan Lincoln hits the pavement in the Newcastle Half Marathon this weekend, the event will boast extra meaning for him.

While the keen athlete’s made a vow to complete eight 21.1km endurance races – one in every state and territory, he’s also raising funds for the Hunter’s much-loved Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service (WRHS).

Already, he has conquered similar feats in Hobart (January) and Canberra (April), with Noosa (May), Uluru (July), Adelaide (August), Melbourne (October) and Freemantle (November) to follow.

But, it’s Newcastle’s Half Marathon on Sunday 21 April, which is especially significant.

It is the home of work colleague Stephanie Campbell, whose daughter Millie was flown by the rescue helicopter in what was literally a lifesaving flight from John Hunter Hospital to specialist services in Sydney in 2019.

“I was really touched by the story, including the lengthy period of initial treatment in Westmead Children’s Hospital and then the years of recovery that followed, which included multiple surgeries, a foot amputation and extensive rehabilitation,” Mr Lincoln said.

“Millie’s road to recovery, as well as the strength and dedication of her parents, is inspiration for me to complete these half marathons… in an effort to raise funds that may one day help to save someone else in need.”

Mr Lincoln began his odyssey in January, wrapping up at the end of the year.

Overall, the challenge will see him run a total of 168km.

“I work in affordable and social housing and am passionate about helping people at their most vulnerable,” he said of his motivation.

“Misfortune doesn’t discriminate; and anyone can find themselves in need of assistance as the result of a twist of fate or accident.

“I first learned about the WRHS through a co-worker whose daughter was saved by the service.

“So, I was compelled to help.

“No one ever expects to need emergency assistance and, in remote parts of NSW, that aid is not always easy to come by.

“Knowing Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service can help those most vulnerable in an emergency really strikes a chord with me.

“I’m excited and proud to make a small contribution to this essential charity.”

Mr Lincoln’s fundraising efforts have not gone unnoticed by the WRHS either.

He will be a special guest when he visits the Broadmeadow facility about 2pm on Saturday 20 April, the eve of his Newcastle half marathon.

“We are incredibly appreciative of Dan’s endeavours in raising funds and awareness of our service,” WHRS head of marketing, media and fundraising James Lawrence said.

“His commitment is incredible… and we wish him the best for his Newcastle event, as well as the remaining ones around Australia that he is taking on in 2024.”

Today, the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service operates in partnership with NSW Ambulance and NSW Health to deliver the highest standard of aeromedical and rescue services to those in need across a state-wide network.

The Newcastle Half Marathon will start from 9am at the Newcastle Foreshore on Sunday 21 April.

To follow Mr Lincoln’s progress, or make a donation, go to https://events.rescuehelicopter.com.au/fundraisers/Dan-Lincoln/half-marathon-mission 

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