Rich Stonier, 35, a professional cricketing coach has raised more than £22,000 for Dougie Mac in memory of his mum – by completing seven challenges in as many days; seven years after her death.
Since losing his best friend and mother, Diane Stonier, 60, in 2012 to stage four sarcoma, Rich from Barlaston, has raised over £100,000 in her honour for Dougie Mac which cared for Diane in her final weeks of life.
After recently leading his under 19s Bangladesh cricket team to World Cup victory for the first time in history — as their Strength and Conditioning Coach — Rich is no stranger to overcoming challenging hurdles.
For the past week he has faced a different challenge every day, to truly scrutinise his physical and mental strength.
In a bid to go bigger and bolder than his past fundraisers such as living in car, Rich has thrown down the gauntlet with his series of seven challenges.
First up on the bill was Rich’s Fire and Ice ball which took place at the bet356 Stadium on Saturday 29th February raising in excess of £16,000 alone.
The rest of the week has seen Rich lead a fitness class like
no other at Hartshill’s Guerilla training centre, complete a 12 hour spinathon
at Asda Tunstall, live in a Dougie Mac shop window before the exuberant
supporter took on a marathon running around the bet365 Stadium. His penultimate
challenge was to spend a day at the hospice in Blurton to lend a hand to
members of staff and volunteers. Rich’s final challenge saw him transform into
a live statue donning the hospice’s sunflower logo in Hanley’s City Centre
outside intu Potteries – to entice shoppers to dig deep and make a donation.
Taking the opportunity to push himself to his limits, Rich explains just why he goes to such lengths to support a worthy local cause close to his heart.
Rich said: “When I take on big challenges, I go through the same emotions that I went through when I was losing my mum.
“The emotions you can’t control including the stress, the worry, and thinking am I going to be ok at the end of this – they’re the same emotions you go through when doing a challenge. And I know it’s a strange way to look at it, but my mum is always with me through the challenges and it helps me to reconnect with her. I am doing all of this for my mum.
“I know she’ll be so proud of me, knowing I am helping others the way she helped a lot of people. And that hospice did everything for her, so if I can give something back to them and know I’ve helped, that’s the most important thing to me.”
Donna Adams, Head of Fundraising & Lottery added; “He is so passionate about raising money for the hospice which is so inspiring! It has been an absolute pleasure for the fundraising team to help organise and support Rich with his challenges.”