Tributes paid to runner who died during Edinburgh Parkrun

A MINUTE'S silence will be held in memory of a man who collapsed and died during the popular Edinburgh Parkrun in Cramond.

Monday, 23rd October 2017, 8:25 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 10:29 am
Ron Connelly

Ron Connelly, 62, fell ill during the 5k course near Cramond on Saturday before passing away during Saturday’s event.

As fellow runners desperately tried to revive him, staff at the nearby Boardwalk Cafe also rushed to help and called emergency services to the scene.

Medics worked to try and revive him, as race goers slowed down and ushered emergency vehicles to where the stricken athlete lay.

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Cramond beach, Picture: Google

Tonight, stunned club members and the parkrun community united in tributes to the popular runner led by his brother Mike who said Ron had “loved” the event.

And they revealed a minute’s silence will be held in his memory this Saturday.

In a statement shared through the Edinburgh Parkrun Facebook page, he said: “It’s with deep sadness and regret to report that my brother Ron Connelly who fell ill at yesterday’s parkrun unfortunately passed away later that day.

“On behalf of the family I’d like to thank everyone who cared for him including the medics, parkrun volunteers, cafe personnel and fellow runners who acted immediately and provided great care for him in what must have been incredibly difficult circumstances for all concerned.

Cramond beach, Picture: Google

“The family would like to pass on their sincere gratitude to everyone.

“Ron was a seasoned runner and loved parkrun, he will be sadly missed.”

A regular at the Edinburgh run, Mr Connelly was also a visitor to other similar events including some in Fife, with tributes and messages of condolence coming in from across Scotland and even abroad.

Gary Frater, who only took over covering as acting event director recently, said they had been in touch with his family to offer their condolences as well as lay out details for this weekend’s tribute.

In a post on the club page, he said: “When I arrived at the scene with the AED, there were already a number of fellow parkrunners working together in a very calm and controlled manner all treating Ron with great care and dignity - it was clear they all had medical experience and they continued in unison until the emergency services arrived.

“I personally want and need to send out a huge thanks to each and every one of these parkrunners for their support, dedication and effort. Gratitude also to the staff at the Boardwalk Cafe for the speed in which they contacted the emergency services.

“Finally, thanks to the rest of the field for following the instructions to slow down and divert to allow the safe entrance and exit of emergency vehicles.

What a truly remarkable collection of people meet each Saturday morning to take part in this wonderful event - long may it continue.

He added: “RIP Ron you will be missed.”

The Edinburgh parkrun has been taking place on Saturdays at 9.30am along Edinburgh promenade for a number of years, and is run by volunteers over three miles.

As many as 500 people take part at a time.