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man runs half marathon after suffering heart attack at start of race
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Man runs half-marathon after suffering heart attack at start of race

A 48 year old runner completed a half-marathon despite suffering a heart attack at the start. He was warming up for the 13-mile race when he felt ill and collapsed, but he shrugged it off and took part in the event. Despite feeling dazed, Dick Cheung finished the Peterborough Half Marathon in just over one hour and 35 minutes. After finishing, he began to feel dizzy and went to the St Johns Ambulance tent for help. They found he had an abnormal heart rhythm and urged him to go to Peterborough City Hospital. He said: “I felt dizzy and unwell and I remember them telling me it was serious.” Mr Cheung wanted to go home to Halleston, Norfolk, and later went to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. He said: “An invasive angiogram revealed I had blocked arteries and would have to have a triple bypass – it was a complete shock. “I had heart attack before the half marathon and I’m lucky to be alive.” Mr Cheung spent days in hospital and was later moved to the Royal Papworth Hospital, Cambs, but caught covid and could not have surgery. He eventually had successful heart surgery on November 22 and was sent home on December 1. Speaking of his recovery journey, Mr Cheung commented, “The recovery has been slow as my chest bone has to heal but everything’s gone really well.” He added: “If it wasn’t for the half marathon, I don’t think I’ve be here today.” Mr Cheung and his twin brother Jack took up running to honour their older brother Sze-Ming, who died after a car hit him whilst he was cycling in 2018. Sze-Ming, aged 44, was training for an Ironman race in Italy when the fatal crash occurred. An inquiry held after his death heard that a van overtook Sze-Ming and forced a grey Nissan Navara to swerve and strike him. The driver of the Nissan was discovered to be under the influence of alcohol and was arrested for drink driving and causing death by dangerous driving. Despite being significantly over the legal limit for alcohol consumption while driving, no charge was pursued. In October 2020, due to insufficient evidence, no further action was taken against a 35 year old man arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. Jack, the brother of Dick and Sze-Ming, said: “We want to continue enjoying running in memory of Sze-Ming and look forward to the future with positivity.” He added: “Keeping Sze-Ming’s flame alive with good health is always important to us.” Today (Feb 12) marks Mr Cheung’s first day back at work as a head chef for his family’s Chinese takeaway, Chung Hing. He shared: “I’m looking forward to the future, and me and Jack hope to run a marathon next year – it’s given me a goal to get better.” He also reminded everyone that “You never know what’s around the corner, life is precious and enjoy it to the full.” Mr Cheung had his heart attack on October 15 last year.

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