Tobias Weller, 9-year-old with cerebral palsy, completes marathon to raise money for charity

Tobias Weller completing the final leg of his walking marathon. Image Source: Joe Giddens/PA

Tobias Weller is not your regular nine-year-old.

He is affected with cerebral palsy and autism, and hence, he cannot stand or walk without aid. Also, for performing most of his regular tasks and chores, he requires external help.

But, he has nerves of steel! And this is certainly not something most adults possess, let alone a mere nine-year old.

Tobias wanted to raise money for charity towards the Sheffield Children’s Hospital, where he has had his medical treatment and surgeries, and Paces School, where he is a student. His school also supports both, children and adults with neurological conditions.

Initially, Tobias’ plan was to walk for 1 kilometre around his local park to raise some donations. However, the lockdown due to the coronavirus prevented him from doing so.

And then, Tobias happened to watch Captain Tom Moore walking laps of his garden to raise money for the NHS and he was inspired to aim for more. This made him try a street marathon!

“Then I heard about Captain Tom and I thought why don’t I use my walker to try to complete a marathon by walking up and down my street every day,” he said in a video ahead of the marathon, admitting it would be a “ginormous challenge.”

At the start of the challenge, Tobias could walk only 50 metres each day. However, that moved to 750 metres towards the end. Would you believe that he had been walking for over 70 days on Sheffield Road, where he resides with his family to ensure that he completes his challenge.

At the end of May, Tobias successfully finished the last leg of his 26.2-mile marathon, raising a massive $100,000 for charity. The police had cordoned off the street as encouraging and enthusiastic neighbours cheered for Tobias to finish off this gargantuan task.

Tobias’ mother, Ruth Garbutt couldn’t be more proud of her son after he finished his challenge. “I’m so, so pleased that he’s completed his marathon. He’s done really well. He’s tried so hard all the way through. He’s really achieved a massive goal. I’m bursting with pride for my little boy. He’s just magnificent.”

Neighbours cheer on Tobias Weller. Image Source: Joe Giddens/PA

The headteacher at Paces School, Ruth Liu, was also very proud of Tobias’ stupendous achievement and said, “Such an aspirational target he set himself and just very slowly and methodically he’s worked his way through it with sheer determination. It’s an absolutely fantastic achievement. We’re so proud of him.”

And what did Tobias say after he completed this seemingly impossible challenge?

“I can’t believe I completed a marathon, it’s just awesome,” he told Sky News. “Every bit of it has been totally awesome.”

“I love it when my neighbors clap and cheer for me. I’m getting stronger and stronger every day. It’s such a good feeling.”

And we couldn’t be more proud of this little man who has shown so much determination and resilience. What do you think of Tobias’ effort? Do let us know your views in the comments section below.

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