Greater Manchester Police officers are in training for the New York Marathon to raise money for the PC Nicola Hughes Memorial Fund.
The PC Nicola Hughes Memorial Fund was set up in honour of Nicola Hughes, one of two GMP officers killed in the line of duty four years ago.
Nicola and her colleague PC Fiona Bone were brutally murdered whilst protecting the citizens of Mottram in Tameside in September 2014.
PCs Jenni Harlow-Smith, based at Pendleton, and Stuart Rostron from Stretford, have now teamed up with fellow colleagues to raise money for the charity by taking part in the marathon in November.
PC Harlow-Smith said: “Nicola and Fiona were responding to a routine police incident, something that Stu and I do daily. The feeling between everyone was that it could easily have been us.
“The fund looks at helping young people by making a difference to their lives when they have been affected by violence, as the Hughes family has, by equipping them with skills for the future.”
The charity, founded by Nicola’s father Bryn Hughes, aims to provide learning opportunities and pre-employment skills to children and young people who have suffered the loss of a close family member through violent crime or manslaughter.
PC Rostron said: “We first got involved with the PC Nicola Hughes Memorial Fund with the first ‘Run To Remember’ fundraising event.
“As officers we worked in Mottram after Nicola and Fiona were tragically killed and, afterwards, we both felt we wanted to help in any way that we could. On hearing about ‘Run To Remember’ we signed up.
“Since then we’ve been involved in a number of fundraising events for the fund and when we heard about the New York Marathon we immediately let Bryn know that we wanted to take part.”
GMP Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said: ”We wish Jenni, Stu and the other officers taking part in the New York Marathon all the very best.
“This is a real physical and mental challenge for everyone running and it will be especially poignant for those raising money for the PC Nicola Hughes Memorial Fund.
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“The memorial fund helps young people who have experienced horrendous tragedy and gives a lifeline to those who are struggling, something that we are very keen to support. It is a charity that is extremely close to all of our hearts.”
Bryn Hughes added: “It means so much to me that the runners from GMP are willing to put themselves through the arduous training for a marathon on behalf of the charity.
“The project, which hopefully will see every UK force represented, will fund a pilot project to provide psychological counselling services for children who are directly affected by a murder of a parent or sibling.
“So if you see your colleagues running along the streets or the treadmill, or baking that cake for the cake sale, dig deep and support not only them but the future victims that we, you and us can help.”
Jenni and Stu will be joined by GMP colleagues as well as other officers from police forces across the country in aid of the PC Nicola Hughes Memorial Fund.