Ilona braced for charity run

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An Ambergate woman is running a Race for Life in memory of her late father, and to raise funds fo r a charity close to her heart.

Ilona Smith lost touch with father Brian Hackett in her early 20s and only regained contact with him in 2010.

Brian, who served in the Navy, sadly died of cancer in May after a two-year battle with the illness, prompting Ilona to raise funds by competing in the Race for Life at Darley Park, Derby on July 12.

She said: “I am so thankful that we had those five years with my Dad.

“And also that he got to meet my husband and his grandchildren, Heather and Daniel.

“I started running around three years ago after a hysterectomy, using the NHS ‘couch to 5k’ app.

“Nine weeks after starting it I was running for 30 minutes and covering around 5k.

“Any donations towards the Race for Life would be greatly appreciated.”

To donate to Ilona’s cause, visit