A SOLDIER from Bulford has cycled 453 miles in memory of his son, who died at the age of ten from sudden unexplained death in epilepsy (SUDEP).
Charlie Burns died in October 2011, just a week after his tenth birthday and his family have been fundraising in his memory for the last two-and-a-half years.
So far, they have raised more than £35,000 for SUDEP Action.
Charlie’s father Baz Burns, a warrant officer in the Royal Engineers, cycled from Whitby to Lewes with a team of friends ranging in age from 17 to 50, who called themselves Lycra Lunatics.
Mr Burns wanted to raise £3,000 for Families Activity Breaks (FAB), a small military charity that supports bereaved military families.
The Burns family were given one of the breaks following Charlie’s death, which gave them the support they needed and the opportunity to meet other bereaved families.
The Lycra Lunatics set off from north Yorkshire to a cheer from 21 bereaved families who were starting one of the FAB breaks there on July 27.
Mr Burns said: “The atmosphere and gratitude of the families was fantastic and gave us cyclists a huge sense of pride to be doing something to make a difference to those who needed help.”
During the cycle ride, the team received a message of recognition for their efforts from the Prime Minister.
The 453 miles, which represents one mile for every British serviceman and woman that has lost their life in Afghanistan, finished in Lewes South Downs on August 2.
The team was welcomed by another 12 FAB families, who were entertained by pipers from 19 Regiment RA and the newly formed Winchester Military Wives Choir.
The cyclists then enjoyed a barbecue and a disco, and met some families and support staff who were starting their week break.
To support the Lycra Lunatics, and help them hit their £3,000 target, visit justgiving.com/lycralunatics.