Sligo ‘wonder woman’ has taken part every year
A 74 years-old Sligo woman completed her 35th Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon in Dublin on Monday and is already looking forward to next year’s.
Angela McLoughlin from Crossbars, Ballintogher is one of a select group of just 10 women, dubbed “wonder women” by the organisers, who have taken part in the event every year since it began.
Angela told the Sligo Weekender that it was “a brilliant day” and she met up with the other nine women before the start.
“We had a great reunion beforehand and they brought us down to the start and we were able to start behind the wheelchairs”, she said.
The fact that they were up at the front for the start meant that Angela had to run for a bit but that didn’t bother her.
“We had to run for a wee bit but then we pulled over to let the runners by us”, she said.
Angela walked the rest of the 10k with her daughter Therese, while another daughter, Michelle, ran it.
She had no difficulty completing it although the weather conditions weren’t great. “It started raining at 8kms but I put on my raincoat and we carried on.”
Angela herself ran it for many years, having first become involved when working on the catering staff at Sligo General Hospital.
A number of nurses were running it to raise money for the hospital and they asked Angela to join them.
Angela did it for a number of years to raise money for the hospital but since 2005 she has been raising money for the Special Olympics, with whom she volunteers.
Her remarkable record of taking part every year looked in jeopardy when she suffered a back injury four years when she fell off a bus but she overcame that to keep going.
Monday’s event was one of her most memorable because of the celebration around her and the other women who have completed all 35.
“It was a wonderful day”, she said.
Angela, who has five children and five grandchildren, says her husband John James and her family have always been very supportive and she is also very grateful to all the people who have supported her by sponsoring her over the years for her charities.
Speaking on Tuesday, Angela said she had been out for a walk that day.
“I was a bit tired but I’ll out again tomorrow. I look forward to getting out for a walk every day and I’m looking forward to doing it again next year,”, she said.