A RUN in memory of an inspirational Colchester mum who died from a brain tumour will return in person this year.

The 5k Run for Gem was inspired by 33-year-old mum-of-two Gemma Edgar, who died from an aggressive and incurable brain tumour in December 2018.

The first Run for Gem took place in Castle Park in Colchester in 2018, to raise money for Brain Tumour Research and St Helena Hospice, where Gemma received end-of-life care. It attracted more than 250 runners and raised more than £5,000 for the charities.

Last year organiser and close friend of Gemma, Cara Greenley, 35, was forced to move to a virtual event due to Covid-19 restrictions.

This year the run will return in person in Colchester Castle park on Saturday, December 11.

Cara, of Colchester, first met Gemma when they were both pupils at St Helena School, but they bonded later in life over a shared love of running.

She said: “This year there is a memory bench in the park as Gemma used to love park run on a Saturday morning.

“So Run for Gem this year will incorporate the bench and we are asking runners to sit and have a photo there as they pass.

“We are hoping to make a photo collage and a keepsake for her family.”


Gemma Edgar and friend Cara Greenley

Gemma Edgar and friend Cara Greenley


This year Jennifer Kaye and Steve Shaw ran the London Marathon in Gemma’s memory and raised more than £4,500 between them.

Mat Stuart, who was a colleague of Gemma’s, also took on the race and has raised £3,000 for Brain Tumour Research.

Both Sarah Langford and Ben Potter took on the race respectively in 2019 and 2020 in Gemma’s memory.

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A paediatric nurse at Colchester Hospital, Gemma was diagnosed with the brain tumour in 2014 when she was just 29.

It came after a few days of migraine-type symptoms and just eight weeks after the birth of her youngest son, Noah.

Noah went on to endure his own battle with retinoblastoma – a form of eye cancer - leading to Gemma’s London Marathon run for the Childhood Eye Cancer Trust in April 2018. She was battling her own condition at the time, but still completed the 26.2-mile run to support the charity.

Despite surgery and treatment, nothing could be done to save Gemma and she died on December 19, 2018.

The 5km run, walk or jog starts at 10.30am at the bandstand. Everyone is welcome. A £5 donation is requested.