Olympic gold medallist Jonathan Edwards and Somerset Cricket Club captain Marcus Trescothick are the famous torchbearers on day three of the London 2012 Olympic torch relay. As the flame travels from Exeter to Taunton the former triple jumper will run through his childhood home town of Ilfracombe while the one time England international cricketer will carry the torch in Taunton.
The relay begins at 7.25am from The Quay in Exeter before heading out of the city on Alphington Road. After stops in towns and villages along the A386 from Okehampton to Bideford, the torch will arrive in Barnstaple at 10.55am. It’ll fall to Richard Dean to carry the Olympic flame across the River Taw and on to The Strand. The college caretaker was nominated for his fundraising and support work for bereaved fathers following the death of his own son Kieran.
“I was put forward by my wife and supported by the Children’s Hospice South West. I’m running in memory of my son but without my son I wouldn’t have had this opportunity. I’d sooner have my son but it’s a real honour and a privilege.”
Richard Dean has run marathons and sky dived in the nine years after Kieran passed away to help raise money for the Children’s Hospice South West based in Fremington in North Devon. John Cass from Combe Martin will also run in memory of loved ones when he carries the flame through his home village. John lost his father to cancer and suffered a further tragedy with the loss of his prematurely born son. He’s raised thousands of pounds for related charities through marathon running.
“I found it amazing that someone had chosen to decide that what I’ve done for charity was worth recognising but then if you take it a step further than that and someone else has said yes they’re right and that is the case because you don’t ever do it, it’s never driven by that but someone to say you’re doing something special, that’s a fantastic honour.”
After leaving North Devon the Olympic torch will journey into West Somerset visiting Porlock, Minehead, Dunster, Carhampton, Washford and Williton before arriving in Taunton for an evening celebration event at Somerset County Cricket Club.