The Mark Pollock Story
At Eglinton Eyecare we have supported the Mark Pollock Trust with a Tombola in the practice as well as taking part in two of the organised ‘Run in the Dark’ events.
For over a decade Mark Pollock was known as an inspiration, an adventure athlete competing in the world’s harshest environments despite being completely blind.
As part of regaining his identity after losing his sight he chose to take on spectacular challenges. He has survived the sub-zero temperatures of Antarctica as he raced to the South Pole over 43 days. He suffered the scorching heat of the Gobi Desert, completing six marathons in one week in “The Race of No Return”. He has competed in races on the frozen Arctic Ocean at the North Pole, through the desert lowlands of the Syrian African Rift Valley to the Dead Sea and at altitude at Everest base camp. He also has two Commonwealth Games medals for rowing under his belt.
In mid-2010, Mark’s business was thriving with a full calendar of motivational speaking events ahead. He was in the process of writing his second book and he was due to be married. On the night of the 2nd of July 2010 everything changed. He fell from a second story window fracturing his skull, some ribs and breaking his back in a number of places. Mark was taken to intensive care where injuries such as bleeds on his brain and a suspected torn aorta one by one healed becoming less and less significant beside the fact that Mark could not feel or move anything below his belly button. An MRI confirmed damage to his spinal cord where two of his vertebrae had burst in the fall. Mark was transferred to the National Spinal Injuries Centre at Stoke Mandeville in England, where spinal surgeons stabilized the bones in his spine with metal rods.
Mark spent 7 months suffering an onslaught of kidney and heart infections, which brought weeks of temperatures and pain and a 3 stone weight loss. Mark’s bones eventually healed but medicine can do nothing to repair a damaged spinal cord and Mark was discharged to The National Rehabilitation Hospital in Ireland in February 2011.
The Mark Pollock Trust hopes to raise significant funds to assist with the capital and ongoing costs specifically associated with his spinal injury – including a team of rehabilitation specialists, physiotherapy equipment, visits to specialised spinal injury activity-based recovery centres and mobility solutions. You can help Mark to break through the barriers that paralysis and blindness have placed around him. All funds raised by the Trust go towards Mark’s incredible journey and drive to lead an independent life.
From his hospital bed, Mark researched what he could do, if anything, to get his legs working again. The results of that research are in equal parts terrifying and exciting. Mark has embarked on a spinal injury activity based recovery programme.
What Is The Run in the Dark?
Run in the Dark is a running event held simultaneously in 5 official locations on Wed 24th Nov 2012- several official locations around the world. It aims to be the biggest multi-location, mass participation running event in the world. You can race, run, or walk either 5 km or 10 km in all locations.