A 46-YEAR-OLD father of two from Saltcoats is set to take on his first ever marathon to raise as much funds as possible for a cause close to his heart.

Ian Ferguson, a bakery manager, is due to take on the challenge in Edinburgh for Macmillan Cancer Support, to say thank you for looking after his father-in-law, Derrick, who sadly passed away from skin cancer two years ago.

He will take to the roads of the capital on May 29, and has raised an amazing figure of around £1,300 for the charity so far.

An emotional Ian explained just how much this cause means to him and his family.

He said: “Derrick was 72-years-old when we lost him. He was diagnosed with skin cancer that had started under his toenail. It was all quite sudden, and he died in just a few weeks, it was a lot for us to deal with.

“He was at home receiving palliative care and it was Macmillan that supported us through that.

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“I don’t think we would have got through it at all without them. To have someone come into the house and allow us to have a cup of tea and just be there for us, helped so much.

“My wife cared for her dad and was so grateful she was able to do so but was also grateful for the support and comfort she received accessing Macmillan’s online services.

“I’ve always wanted to say thank you, to give something back and raise awareness, especially of melanoma and how it can just start so small from under a toenail.

“Cancer is something that affects just about every family, and I honestly never knew much about it until I found myself having to research it. These funds will go towards helping someone else who sadly find themselves in a similar position.”

Ian, who works for Brownings the Bakers, suffers, himself, from an autoimmune disease, Ulcerative Colitis and after Derrick passed away, he really struggled with his illness.

He explained: “I was putting on the pounds and felt incredibly low - I really let myself go. I was having a lot of flare ups and just not in a great place.

“I decided that enough is enough, got the trainers on and took up running – it’s been so good for my mental health. My wife, Donna, has been a great support and has encouraged me to get out there.”