Eva, seven, to ride 100 miles for tragic mum

Eva and her family and friends on a training run
Eva and her family and friends on a training run
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The young daughter of an inspirational teacher who died just 20 days after being diagnosed with an extremely rare form of cancer will cycle 100 miles in her memory.

Seven-year-old keen cyclist Eva Shaw hopes the ride will raise vital funds for Cancer Research UK following her mum Jo’s death in September.

Jo Shaw, who died from cancer last year, leaving those who knew her devastated

Jo Shaw, who died from cancer last year, leaving those who knew her devastated

The 39-year-old, of St Annes, died at Blackpool Victoria Hospital after spending her last days making memories for Eva, seven, and her youngest daughter Isla, three.

She was described as the ‘jewel’ in her family’s crown.

Eva’s grandfather, Terry, said: “The tragedy happened so quickly that, not only was it devastating to all of us, there was no time to prepare the children for the change, or loss in their lives.

“While they still have their own problems, they are progressing with life and Eva has set herself the challenge of cycling 100 miles over four-and-a-half days for charity.”

He continued: “Since the loss of her mother, Eva has declared that she wants to undertake the challenge in order to raise money to stop other people being taken away by this cruel disease.”

Setting off on Saturday, May 28, Eva will ride 22.5 miles a day, cycling a variety or routes, including the Guild Wheel in Preston, and along Fylde coast promenades.

She will end with a 10-mile ride that will finish at St Annes Cricket Club, where refreshments will be served at a celebratory event.

Terry said: “The challenge is a daunting one for most adults, but for a seven-year-old is amazing.

“Her training is going well but, as you will know, it will not just be the 22.5 miles she will need to complete in each of four days – day five is 10 miles – it is the ability to do it day after day.

“But she is determined and is gaining tremendous support, particularly from her cyclist father Gareth, who will be accompanying her throughout, and taking care of her.”

Eva had raised £4,750 yesterday, at the time of going to print. Her target is £5,000.

On an online fundraising page, dozens of well-wishers left messages of encouragement for Eva.

One, Sue Molyneaux, who donated £30, said: “Well done, Eva, your mummy would be so proud of your determination.

“You can be proud that, when a cure for cancer is found, your efforts helped to do that.”

Mary and Dave Crumpton, from Australia, added: “Good luck, Eva. Your mommy was a very special person.

“We were very close to her when she was your age.”

To donate online, visit tinyurl.com/zyulo8t