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7 December 2007 - North Shore Times - By Simon Plumb
Two physically impaired athletes have set an example to the disabled and able-bodied alike by completing the 2007 ING New York City Marathon last month.
Visually impaired distance runner Michael Lloyd from Birkdale jetted off to the Empire State for his first New York Marathon, declaring one of his reasons for doing it was to become part of the small group of people who complete the distance event.
But Lloyd wanted to tackle his impairment head-on to demonstrate to himself, and others, how disabilities can be overcome.
On his website, blindrunner.com, Lloyd says, I am constantly receiving comments from people who see me training that it makes them realise everybody can achieve far more as long as they commit their mind, body and soul.
My devotion and commitment to strenuous training and the persistent quest to overcome physical barriers due to my blindness is having an inspiring, positive effect on both the general community as well as other people with physical impairments.
Lloyd completed the 42.2km run in an impressive 4 hours and 36 minutes.
Fallow North Shore resident Violet Lawrence in her second New York Marathon crossed the line in 7 hours 54 minutes.
The five-time stroke sufferer was disappointed to finish half an hour down on last years time, but was never the less please with her achievement.
My guides Dianne and Giarna who helped me among the pain, were an inspiration.
I believe that anything is possible once you put your mind to it, so I did, and the results are immeasurable.