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“The smile on his face at the summit said it all” – Father climbs Snowdon with son on his back to raise money for muscle-wasting charity

12 October 2022

Tim Morris climbed the tallest mountain in Wales while carrying his eight-year-old son, Ruairi, on his back to raise money for Muscular Dystrophy UK. Ruairi isn’t able to climb Snowdon himself due to the nature of his progressive muscle-wasting condition, so Tim put in double the effort to reach the peak.

Accompanied by a group of friends and family, Tim used a specialty child carrier backpack to help him transport Ruairi up the mountain. Climbing Snowdon was the biggest challenge the father and son duo have completed to date, having done bike rides and local hill walks together in the past.

Tim explains that he set himself the challenge because he wanted “to raise funds for Muscular Dystrophy UK (MDUK) to aid research, to find a cure or to develop drugs to improve the lives of children in the same situation [as Ruairi].”

Ruairi was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a rare genetic progressive disease that causes muscles to become weaker over time, including the heart and the muscles used to breathe, when he was just three years old.

“Both ourselves and his nursery noticed he found it difficult getting to his feet and climbing steps. It was his paediatric consultant who first spotted it and it was confirmed with a blood test. We were both devastated, and it took many months to accept it. To deal with it we try not to look too far into the future and live in the present,” explains Tim.

The climb

On the day of the climb, they faced a forecast for gusty winds and temperatures on the summit close to freezing.

“It was more challenging and took longer than I had anticipated. Luckily, the weather held, and the views were spectacular and that spurred us on. We had some friends of Ruairi’s that walked with us who were also raising funds for MDUK and who gave great support and inspiration,” shares Tim.

It was a privilege to spend this time with Ruairi and to reach the summit together, something that will be impossible as he gets bigger. The smile on his face at the summit said it all, I am so proud of him.

Fundraising for Muscular Dystrophy UK

Tim’s wider family are keen fundraisers too, with his father often organising fun runs in Shropshire. Ruairi’s nine-year-old cousin, Frank, is also raising funds by walking the local hills with his parents and friends.

The family has raised over £4,000 to date, which has made a huge difference to people living with Duchenne and other muscle-wasting conditions.

To support Tim and Ruairi, visit the pair’s JustGiving page.

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