JED Thirkettle completed a 24-hour workout fundraiser to celebrate his 24th birthday despite being told by medical experts that he would be unlikely to live past 20.
At eight years old, Jed, from Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, was diagnosed with Ullrich congenital muscular dystrophy, an inherited muscle condition that affects the growth and flexibility of a person’s joints and muscles.
Doctors predicted that Jed would spend most of his life in a wheelchair and reliant on a ventilator by the age of 14.
However, against all odds, Jed completed the impressive 24-hour challenge to raise funds and awareness for Muscular Dystrophy UK through his JustGiving page.
The workout included a mixture of exercises from intense cardio to yoga and as of now, has raised more than £17,000, with additional off-line donations seeing the total raised over £19,000.
This is not Jed’s first fundraising activity for Muscular Dystrophy UK. Over the years Jed has built a community of fundraisers called Team Jed, who have raised over £200,000 for the charity.
Muscular Dystrophy UK, support more than 110,000 children and adults in the UK living with any of the over 60 muscle weakening conditions.
Jed has even received support from ex-footballer, now Arsenal coach, Jack Wilshere, and TV presenter, Gabby Logan.
“I am thrilled that I’ve completed my 24-hour workout challenge for 24 years and although there were challenges along the way – especially with fatigue and muscular tiredness – I am overjoyed with the amount of money and awareness we have raised for such an important charity.
“I wanted to say a huge thank you to my friends, family, Muscular Dystrophy UK and JustGiving for their support. I hope to continue raising awareness and funds for such a vital cause.”
Pascale Harvie, President and General Manager of JustGiving said:
“The perseverance and determination Jed has shown in order to complete this fundraising challenge is astounding.
“In addition to raising an amazing amount of money for Muscular Dystrophy UK, he’s built a wonderful community of like-minded fundraisers who are working together to drive even more awareness and vital funds for the condition. We can’t wait to see what the fantastic Team Jed decides to take on next!”
Debbie Hoods, Head of Philanthropy, Partnerships & Ambassador Engagement of Muscular Dystrophy UK said:
“Thanks to Jed for taking part and conquering this unique challenge to help raise awareness and funds to support potentially life-changing research for the muscle-wasting and weakening community.
“Jed and his family have been avid supporters and we’re grateful for their support over the years. Wishing Jed a very happy birthday – we can’t wait to see what you do next.”
To donate to Jed’s cause, please visit: justgiving.com/page/jedthirkettle.