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Medway dad, who suffered a haemorrhage during a parkrun, to raise funds for The Brain Charity in Liverpool Rock 'n' Roll mile


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A dad who was given a 30% chance of survival after a blood vessel bulge in his brain ruptured during a parkrun will defy the odds to walk a mile.

Paul Ives, 54, from Medway, was paralysed down his left side after suffering a subarachnoid haemorrhage in January 2020 while completing the 5km run.

Paul Ives ran 15 marathons before suffering a haemorrhage Pic: The Brain Charity
Paul Ives ran 15 marathons before suffering a haemorrhage Pic: The Brain Charity

Tomorrow, the dad-of-two will walk the Liverpool Rock ‘n’ Roll mile to raise vital funds for The Brain Charity while other runners take on marathon, half marathon and 10km distances.

The former town planner said: “I was running a 5km parkrun, got one lap round and went to speed up but my body wouldn’t move.

“I got to the half way point, met my wife Toni and had to lie on the ground.

“I was rushed to hospital, where Toni was told I had a 70% chance of dying.

“This Sunday everyone else taking part will be running off to do that mile, and I’ll be walking as fast as I can.

Watch: Paul Ives learning to walk again after a bugle in a blood vessel burst

“When I look back, I’m frustrated I can’t do more but so proud of how far I’ve come.

“For me it won’t be about speed, it’s about enjoying the fact I’m still here and able to keep going.”

Paul underwent a life-saving craniotomy operation, in which part of the bone from his skull was removed to expose the brain, but lost the use of his left side due to the bleeding on his brain.

He was transferred to a rehabilitation unit for 12 weeks of intensive physiotherapy, and was one of the last patients to be accepted before the UK went into lockdown due to Covid-19 last March.

Paul said: “The hardest thing was not being able to see family on a regular basis.

Paul Ives, 54, undergoing physiotherapy in hospital to learn to walk again, after being paralysed down his left side Pic: The Brain Charity
Paul Ives, 54, undergoing physiotherapy in hospital to learn to walk again, after being paralysed down his left side Pic: The Brain Charity

“My sense of humour is what got me through – I approach every day as it comes.”

Before being paralysed, Paul ran 15 marathons and has completed the Liverpool Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon three times.

He hopes eventually to regain fitness to the point where he can jog again.

Paul said: “I said right from the start I would treat the recovery as a marathon, and I still have good days and bad days.

“It’s difficult when you have a brain injury, as you find it harder to process your emotions and talk to others.

Paul Ives, 54, from Medway, suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm in January 2020 Pic: The Brain Charity
Paul Ives, 54, from Medway, suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm in January 2020 Pic: The Brain Charity

“That’s why I’m supporting The Brain Charity, as they help people recovering with the practical things but emotional support too.”

Paul’s wife Toni and son Liam have run the Cambridge Half Marathon and Liverpool Half Marathon, also in aid of The Brain Charity.

Together, the determined family have raised nearly £1,000 for the charity, which supports people with all forms of neurological condition.

Toni said: “Paul has had an incredible journey and has been determined to gain as much fitness back as he can – going from being paralysed on his left side to being able to walk a mile.”

Paul Ives, 54, from Medway, suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm in January 2020 Pic: The Brain Charity
Paul Ives, 54, from Medway, suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm in January 2020 Pic: The Brain Charity

Tui Benjamin, head of fundraising at The Brain Charity, said: “Paul’s dedication to his recovery a time when he was forced to take on this challenge without the physical presence of his family due to the lockdowns is extraordinary.

“His tenacity and determination is inspirational and we are so honoured he and his family have chosen to support The Brain Charity.”

To support the Ives family here, click here.

Read more: All the latest news from Medway

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