An Ellon man whose wife was left paralysed following a motorcycle accident is taking part in this weekend’s London Marathon to help raise funds for the charity that has supported them.
Phil and Nikki Thornley’s lives were devastated last September when she suffered serious spinal injuries as they set off on a trip to celebrate his 40th birthday.
The couple were travelling through the Borders on motorbikes when she lost control of her machinein heavy rain and was struck by an oncoming vehicle.
As Nikki continues her rehabilitation in hospital in Glasgow, Phil is putting the final touches to his preparations to raise money for Spinal Research UK.
He told the Times: “Nikki is doing really well in rehabilitation and remains in the Spinal Injuries Unit at the Southern General Hospital. All operations have been carried out to stabilise her spine and repair her broken wrist.
“She is now using a manual wheelchair and busy practising those everyday chores we take for granted like getting herself dressed, making a hot drink and washing.
“The plan is for her to leave hospital in May/June and home to Ellon if she keeps up the hard work in the gym.”
The oil company project engineer said he is adapting their house for his wife’s return and they are looking into a purpose-built home to meet her needs.
Phil added: “I have received loads of support from Ellon residents as they see me running with simple gestures from a toot of the horn to shouts of encouragement.”
He has also praised the backing he has received from Jennifer Cordiner and her sister Nicola Hastie.
Jennifer is a colleague of Nikki’s and, along with her sister, has organised a charity pub quiz and a number of on-line auctions for Spinal Research UK and Aspire, a charity working with spinal injury patients leaving hospital and housing them in specially-adapted homes.
The sisters will be running for Aspire in the marathon. Phil has raised more than £2500 so far. To sponsor him visit justgiving.com/philip-thornley1.