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Former soldier from Dagenham who survived two strokes will walk the distance of a marathon for charity

PUBLISHED: 09:00 13 June 2018

Bob Bailie has survived two major strokes. Pic: Stroke Association

Bob Bailie has survived two major strokes. Pic: Stroke Association

Archant

A former soldier from Dagenham who suffered two strokes that left him with life-changing disabilities will walk the distance of a marathon to raise funds for a health charity.

Bob Bailie, of Thompson Road, plans to cover the 26.2 miles over seven days for the Stroke Association’s Walk Your Way challenge.

The 52-year-old was serving in the British Army and was just 38 when he suffered his first stroke while he tried to sleep off a severe heartache.

He woke the next day unable to speak or walk.

Six years later he had a second stroke that caused weakness in the right side of his body and left him with communication difficulties.

Bob said: “I was terrified. The headache was like pain I had never felt before. It was like being trapped in a dream that you can’t wake up from.

“Before it happened to me, I didn’t know what a stroke was or that it could happen at such a young age.”

After he first stroke Bob become a volunteer for the Stroke Association where he helps at local fundraising events and trains the charity’s new staff members by sharing his experience of stroke.

He said: “I have always enjoyed walking and thought this would be the perfect way to get fit, and raise vital funds for the Stroke Association.

“Waking the distance of a marathon will be an enormous challenge for me as my stroke has left me disabled. But, I’m doing this to show other stroke survivors that there is life after stroke and if I can do it, then anyone can do it!

“I want everyone to join me and support this worthy cause”

Hannah Richards, fundraising manager at the Stroke Association, said: “We are incredibly grateful to Bob for taking on this challenge to raise vital funds to help the Stroke Association support more stroke survivors re-gain their independence.”

She added: “We hope to see lots of people join Bob by getting their walking shoes on for the Stroke Association.”

Walk Your Way takes place from June 17 to July 1.

To sign up visit stroke.org.uk/walkyourway.

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