Kensworth family remember loving Lisa Langford with purple power at Willow 10K

Releasing balloons for Lisa. Adam (back row second left); Luke (front right) with Jake standing behind. Left:  Zena Ellis one of Lisa's best friends; Zena ran the London Marathon for Willow this year in Lisa's memory. Friends - 1027: Finbar Willis; 1521: Willie Ellingham. Credit: ScanTech Photography.
Releasing balloons for Lisa. Adam (back row second left); Luke (front right) with Jake standing behind. Left: Zena Ellis one of Lisa's best friends; Zena ran the London Marathon for Willow this year in Lisa's memory. Friends - 1027: Finbar Willis; 1521: Willie Ellingham. Credit: ScanTech Photography.

A loving Kensworth family took part in a charity fun run in memory of their brave wife and mother who battled cancer.

Father Adam Langford, 44, ran the Willow Foundation 10K race at Hatfield House on Sunday, with sons Jake, 10, and Luke, six, competing in the Junior 1k in memory of courageous mother, Lisa Langford, who passed away aged 37 in February.

Lisa's family and friends at the Willow 10k. Credit: ScanTech Photography.

Lisa's family and friends at the Willow 10k. Credit: ScanTech Photography.

The mother-of-two was diagnosed with breast cancer in December 2015, and to support the family, Willow, who work with seriously ill young adults, arranged a special day for the Langfords in London during summer 2016.

The Langfords were treated to famous theatre production, The Lion King, and dinner at the Rainforest Cafe.

However, after being told the devastating news at Christmas (2016) that Lisa’s cancer was terminal, having spread to her liver and lungs, Adam, Jake and Luke now want to give something back to the charity along with Lisa’s many friends who ran in her memory.

Adam, whose birthday was also on Sunday, said: “Both Jake and Luke loved the day.

“Luke did very well and Jake came fourth.

“This year I did the 10K route and I thoroughly enjoyed the run; it’s a beautiful route. The support from all my fellow runners was amazing.

“I didn’t expect to be sung Happy Birthday by Bob Wilson, Willow’s co-founder and Life President, and a cast of several hundred runners - it really made my day!”

To pay tribute to Lisa, family and friends ran with purple balloons in her memory which they released after the race.

More than 700 people took part to support Welwyn-based Willow, the only national charity working with seriously ill young adults aged 16 to 40 to “fulfil... unforgettable, special days”.

The Willow 10K has raised more than £350,000 since it began in 1998. Funds are still coming in, and it’s hoped that the overall total over the years could reach almost £400,000.

Bob Wilson said: “Each year we see this event grow – welcoming loyal supporters who take part every year alongside new faces joining to support Willow. It’s humbling to see so many people who have been touched by Special Days – some we’re pleased have now recovered from their illness enough to take part, where others have friends and family running in their memory.

“The Willow 10K is a fun family event and, in turn, raises funds for families and individuals to create their own precious memories during a really difficult time. Next year will see the Willow 10K’s tenth anniversary so sign up now and we’ll see you there.”

The Willow 10K tenth anniversary race will take place on Sunday, October 7, 2018 at Hatfield House.

To mark the anniversary, the first 50 places will be offered at the original 2008 entry price of just £12.50.

Sign up now at willowfoundation.org.uk/willow10K