Teachers and friends to run marathon for Millie

Olivia Arnot, Rosina Barton and David Campbell are running the Half Marathon in memory of Millie McLean. Picture: Toby Williams
Olivia Arnot, Rosina Barton and David Campbell are running the Half Marathon in memory of Millie McLean. Picture: Toby Williams
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Big-hearted teachers and friends of a teenage cancer victim will take part in the Edinburgh Marathon Festival in her memory.

Popular 16-year-old Millie McLean lost her battle with a rare soft tissue cancer last year, leaving friends at Craigmount High School devastated.

But now 35 pupils from the school and 40 teachers from across the Capital will race over the marathon weekend to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support.

Among those taking part in the 10km run on Saturday, May 30 and Sunday, May 31 will be two of her friends, S6 pupils Olivia Arnot and Rosina Barton.

Olivia, 17, said she believed Millie would have done the race for them had the situation been reversed.

She said: “I was friends with Millie for a long time. We grew up together and went to the same nursery and playgroup.

“She was the most bubbly and outgoing person. She never said a bad word about anyone. She was a lovely girl.

“We knew she was unwell but it was still a huge shock for everyone.

“Often when someone dies, no-one wants to talk about it, but with Millie it wasn’t taboo at all. People are always talking about her and keeping her memory alive.

“She would have definitely done the race with us.”

Rosina Barton, also 17, said: “We were best friends throughout primary school and high school. Millie was the person that was friends with everyone. She could sit on any table in the dining hall and get on with everyone. She was one of a kind.

“Me and Olivia had gone to see her a few weeks before she died, but it was such a shock when she did. Everyone really came together and we shared so many memories and photos, which we still do. She isn’t gone.

“I think the race day will be a nice event in her memory. We always talked about doing things for charity with her.”

The Edinburgh Marathon Festival is Macmillan’s biggest fundraising event in Scotland and this year 1500 runners are expected to take part for the charity.

They are on track to raise more than £700,000, the highest amount ever from this event. The money could pay for four Macmillan nurses for three years, helping people living with cancer and their families receive essential medical, practical and emotional 
support or a new chemotherapy suite in a hospital.

Last year, Macmillan spent almost £7 million on cancer services in Scotland and gave out £1.5m in grants to more than 4700 cancer patients across Scotland who were experiencing financial problems because of their illness.

In Edinburgh alone it donated £80,000 to more than 250 cancer patients.