Whilst many of us were fast asleep in bed this morning, local school-teacher Johanne McColgan was lining up with hundreds like herself, to set of on the 26 mile journey of the 2016 Walled City Marathon in Derry. Only yesterday Mrs McColgan accompained her class of students from Scoil Naomh BrĂ­d as they made their First Holy Communion. Life for this lady certainly isn’t dull.DSC_9413
As I walked around Derry this morning supporting the runners and photographing them, I tried to understand just want makes these people punish themselves to this extent. Clearly I didn’t come up with any answers! But as I entered the area at the finish line and began photographing the runners as they crossed that line, I was filled with emotion. It’s exhillarating just watching these people come to the end of such an intense and personal journey.
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Then I spotted Johanne approaching the finish line. It becomes even more emotional as you watch someone you know reach that all important finish line. But Johanne was not alone. Her son Cormac and daughter Rhiana accompained her on the final mile. It really was a delight to see her children cross the finish line alongside their mother.
Cormac and Rhiana didn’t only run the last mile today with Mum Johanne. These kids are following in mothers footsteps. Earlier this morning they both completed the children’s mini marathon. And not only did they finish it, they came 2nd and 10th in the said race. Huge congrats kids.Johanne kids
I don’t doubt Johanne is quite content that this is indeed a Bank Holiday weekend and she doesn’t have to venture into the classroom tomorrow. She’ll be well rested and most likely running into the school come Tuesday morning!
Huge congrats to Johanne, and also to Cormac and Rhiana on their achievements today. Enjoy the well earned rest tonight, it’s well deserved.

GMcC