Rugby friends take on fundraising challenge in memory of Aaron
A group of 15 friends from Hamilton Rugby Club are less than a week away from taking on a running and cycling challenge dubbed ‘Arran for Aaron’, raising money for Neuroendocrine Cancer UK.
The group will be running and cycling nearly 60 miles across the isle of Arran on Saturday (18 September), covering 2,730 ft of elevation in memory of former-team mate and friend, Aaron Beale who passed away in November 2020 aged 27.
Speaking to scottishrugby.org, Tony Malley, one of Aaron’s close friends shared how the challenge came to be, and how the group have been preparing.
“Losing Aaron was really tough, especially during the covid-lockdown. Our friendship group is really tight, we’re all current and past players, and the tragedy of losing Aaron made us want to take care of ourselves and prioritise our wellbeing. We figured a fundraising challenge would be a good way to show that.
“As well as playing rugby, Aaron was a keen runner and cyclist, so we wanted to honour his memory with a challenge that combined cycling and a half-marathon. Some of us will complete the cycle or the half-marathon but six of the guys are doing to do both, which is really something given how hilly Arran is.”
“We felt it was important to create something positive despite the tremendous loss we feel.” Tony Malley, Hamilton Rugby
Tony and his team have been training individually and as a group, where restrictions have allowed, covering hundreds of miles in the build up to the big day.
“A former member of the club now runs a gym, and he put on a special spin class for us last week. The 10 of us who took part managed to make it through that gruelling session, it was definitely harder than he would normally do it, put it that way, he put us through our paces!”
The group have so far raised over £9,000 for the charity and have set their sights of raising £10,000 before they reach the isle.
You can add your support by donating to the group’s JustGiving page: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/arranforaaron
You can also keep up with their progress on Facebook: www.facebook.com/ArranForAaron