Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting ECHONEWS to 80360, or email us »
West Ham fan Jonjo Heuerman taking part in 500-mile dribble challenge for Southend cancer charity
A SCHOOLBOY fundraiser kicked off a 500-mile dribble challenge for a cancer charity in Southend.
Dedicated West Ham fan Jonjo Heuerman, 12, started the Boot it for Bobby challenge at Southend United and will dribble the ball to West Ham’s Upton Park.
He hopes to raise £50,000 for the Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research UK this year, to mark the 50th anniversary of Bobby Moore lifting the FA Cup as captain of West Ham.
To start the adventure, Jonjo, from Wilmington, near Dartford, Kent, led a classic scooter rally from the pier to the gates of Roots Hall, where Bobby Moore was manager in the mid- Eighties.
At Roots Hall, he was met by members of the club before the official start of the 50-mile dribble from the centre circle.
Keen fundraiser Jonjo has already raised an astonishing £141,000 for the Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research UK.
He is accompanied on the 50- mile route by mum, Donna, dad, Gary, and sister Megan, 16.
He is also hoping other football fans will come and dribble alongside him.
He said: “I’m really excited about this year’s challenge. I really love football, so it will be extra fun.
“I’m really looking forward to all the special things that are happening along the way and other people joining in along the route.
“I really hope I am able reach my target of £50,000 to make Bobby proud.”
Among the special events planned for his five-day walk are a reception at the Basildon Festival Leisure Centre, a reception at the Chequers, in Billericay, and meeting the mayor of Havering in Hornchurch.
On the final day of the walk, he will lay flowers on Bobby Moore’s grave and at his statue at Upton Park, before dribbling the ball to the centre circle to complete the challenge prior to West Ham’s match against Southampton.
Jonjo was inspired to start his walks after his nanny, Lyn, died of bowel cancer in February 2008, and completes all of his challenges in honour of her and Bobby, who also died of bowel cancer.
His mum, Donna, 45, said the family had been overwhelmed by the support they have received at home and from around the world.
She said: “We’ve had tremendous local support, but also people coming from all over the world just to take part.
“People ask to put the names of their loved on Jonjo’s Angel shirt, which is covered in the names of people who have died of cancer.
“It’s an amazing thing to be part of.
“His nan would be very proud of him and his sister.”
For more details, visit www.fornannyandbobby.com and to donate to Jonjo’s challenge, visit www.justgiving.com/fornannyandbobby