John honoured as walk tops £1m in 25 years
BUS driver John Evans was the toast of the annual Five Valleys Walk.
After 25 years volunteering with the Meningitis Trust's major fundraiser the 64-year-old helped out on his last marathon walk last weekend.
John, who lives in Stroud, has helped provide the free Stagecoach shuttle bus service which ferries weary walkers back to their starting points for the past quarter of a century.
With retirement from work looming in March, John's final unstinting effort was recognised with presentations made by the Stroud-based trust's chief executive Sue Davie.
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Event organiser Becky Jones said: "We wanted to pay special thanks to John.
"Each year he's organised up to 20 drivers to volunteer, helped them set-up the event by distributing water bottles, banners and much more to each of the nine checkpoints, fuelling up the buses and making sure each driver has their trust T-shirts.
"The Stagecoach drivers are amazing and John and his family deserve special recognition."
This autumn, more than 2,000 people turned out to tackle the 21-mile walk which the trust is confident will raise its £60,000 target.
"That will take us to more than £1million raised by participants in the Five V alleys Walk over the past 25 years," said Becky.
"Thank heavens the rain stayed away and the crowds came out in force this year. It made for a lovely day for everyone taking part and a fantastic one for the trust."
Becky said the Meningitis Trust relied on public support at events like the walk to raise the vital funds it needed to continue offering its lifesaving services to everyone affected by meningitis.
A further highlight of the walk was the presentation of a cake to Troy, nine, who had meningitis five times but completed about half the walk on his birthday.