101013746 83b7ad79 dbbd 4bc6 8e67 680e7033d167 - London Marathon: Broken leg runner Jo Denton thanks heroes

London Marathon: Broken leg runner Jo Denton thanks heroes

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Jo Denton

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St John Ambulance volunteer Ollie Needham helped Jo Denton in The Mall

A runner has thanked the “wonderful strangers” who helped her complete the last four miles of the London Marathon with a broken leg.

Jo Denton, 41, from Poole in Dorset, who was fundraising for Children with Cancer UK, carried on after suffering what she thought was a sprained knee.

Runners and race volunteers gave piggy backs and carried her to allow her to hop over the line to claim her medal.

An X-ray later revealed she had actually broken her leg.

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Jo Denton

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Joanne Graham and Sally Daley were among those who helped Ms Denton

Writing on Facebook, Ms Denton, a maths teacher, said she had been on target for a six-hour finish in what was her first marathon, when she felt pain in her knee after 22 miles.

Thinking it was a sprain, she was helped through the final stages by other runners who supported, carried and even gave her a piggy back ride. She was also lent a pair of crutches by a spectator.

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She said her knee and shin “totally gave way” at 25 miles when she was helped by and pushed in a wheelchair by St John Ambulance volunteer Ollie Needham and his colleague.

“They realised how distraught I was to get so close to the end and so they ran the last mile pushing me in a wheelchair to the finish line,” she said.

“Then he and another runner helped me hop over the finish line.

“My faith in humanity is at an all-time high. Such wonderful support from complete strangers which must have caused them pain themselves. I made a few friends for life,” she said.

A medical examination later showed she had suffered a stress fracture during the race.

More than 40,000 runners took part amid temperatures of 24.1C (75.3F) which were recorded in St James’s Park.

The 26.2-mile race was started at 10:00 BST by the Queen who pressed a button from the grounds of Windsor Castle.

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