McCanns join run to support missing people charity

The parents of Madeleine McCann today joined 450 runners to take part in a 10km fun run for missing people.





Gerry and Kate McCann lined up together alongside other families whose loved ones vanished at the first ever Miles for Missing People in London's Hyde Park.



The couple wore matching white T-shirts bearing a smiling picture of their daughter and the words "Don't give up on me".



Mrs McCann, 42, and her husband Gerry, 41, from Rothley, Leicestershire, were on holiday with their three children in Praia da Luz in Portugal when Madeleine went missing in May 2007.



In an earlier statement, Mrs McCann said: "Gerry and I know the pain that having Madeleine missing has caused us, but sadly we are not alone. There are thousands of families across the UK waiting for news.



"That's why Missing People provides support for missing children, vulnerable adults and families left behind, and we want to do all we can to help them."



Among the runners was Rachel Elias, 40, from Blackwood, Gwent, south Wales, sister of former Manic Street Preachers guitarist Richey Edwards, who went missing in February 1995.



She said: "I am running it for my brother and for all the other people who have disappeared and to support the work of this charity. They have been a tremendous source of strength over the last 15 years.



"He was legally declared dead in November 2008, but there is no certainty over the loss, there is that hope.



"There are moments when you swing between hope and despair, sometimes you feel different emotions at the same time which can be very confusing.



"People describe a missing person as a loss. It is a loss but an ambiguous loss. Until he is found alive or dead we will always have hope."



Also supporting today's event was Nicki Durbin, 41, from Hollesley, Suffolk, whose son Luke disappeared in May 2006 aged 19 following an evening at a nightclub in Ipswich.



She said: "My son has been missing for nearly four years. Missing People is the national charity that has helped us since Luke first went missing.



"Other families have been a lifeline, it's very important to get together and talk to people who completely understand your situation.



"I think I am constantly grieving for my son. I believe something sinister happened, but there is still that chance that he is alive.



I feel I have become a master at masking my despair but it is always there."



BBC3 television presenter Kirsten O'Brien, who worked alongside the late presenter Mark Speight, helped spur on runners as they warmed up at the start next to the bandstand accompanied by the Rock Choir.



She said: "After Mark went missing, it really struck me how helpful it is to have a port of call for people whose loved ones or friends have gone missing. To see the charity in action struck a chord with me.



"Because Mark was so funny there are times when I recall something he did and I just laugh, it's nice to have that joyous element back."



Martin Houghton-Brown, CEO of Missing People, added: "It is a really important day. It is not just about the families who have someone missing, it is about Britain as a whole recognising that this is an issue that can affect anybody.



"When somebody goes missing the friends and family need a huge amount of support. Missing People is there 24 hours a day, seven days a week."



The event has already raised in excess of £20,000.



The McCanns are raising funds for her run at uk.virginmoneygiving.com/katemccann1



Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Arts and Entertainment
British musician Mark Ronson arrives for the UK premiere of the film 'Mortdecai'
music
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
Sport
footballBrighton vs Arsenal match report
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch has spoken about the lack of opportunities for black British actors in the UK
film
News
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Austen Lloyd: Private Client Solicitor - Oxford

Excellent Salary : Austen Lloyd: OXFORD - REGIONAL FIRM - An excellent opportu...

Austen Lloyd: Clinical Negligence Associate / Partner - Bristol

Super Package: Austen Lloyd: BRISTOL - SENIOR CLINICAL NEGLIGENCE - An outstan...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Consultant - Solar Energy - OTE £50,000

£15000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Fantastic opportunities are ava...

Recruitment Genius: Compute Engineer

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Compute Engineer is required to join a globa...

Day In a Page

Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us