Every journey, no matter how small, starts with a single step and for former Rotherham United defender Vance Warner, he’ll have done a million of them by the end of March.
Vance – who made over 60 appearances for the Millers between 1997 and 2000 – has pledged to walk one million steps throughout the month of March to raise money for Nottingham University Hospitals Charity, in honour of his beloved friend Clare Doran, who tragically passed away in September 2021 at the age of 48, following a battle with bowel cancer.
Clare was cared for on Fraser Ward and at Hayward House palliative care centre, both at the City Hospital. Vance hopes to raise £4,700 through the walking challenge, which will go towards improving the garden area for patients and families at Hayward House.
The journey is equivalent of walking from Inverness in Scotland, all the way to London, which takes just shy of 10 hours to reach by car and is over 550 miles away!
He’s been setting alarms for 4:30am, battling aches, pains and worn-down footwear, initially aiming to raise £4,700 to help cover cost of enhancing the facilities at Nottingham University Hospital Charity.
The venture has already been very well supported after receiving coverage from Vance’s former club Nottingham Forest, as well as BBC Radio Nottingham and Notts TV, helping to raise a whopping £4,900 thus far.
Vance pictured with his beloved friend Clare, who tragically passed away from bowel cancer in September 2021.
“We’ve been absolutely overwhelmed by the support we have received so far and any donation, not matter how big or small will be greatly appreciated by us all,” Warner told www.themillers.co.uk.
“There have been tough days, days where I’ve felt rundown and not at 100%, but it is all for a wonderful friend and my way of showing love and support to her family and the amazing staff at the hospital who cared for her.
“The love and support we have received along the way has been truly heart-warming and it has given me that extra boost to get up when the alarm goes off at 4:30am and get my walking boots on."
“I know that this challenge is something that Clare would have seen and said to me ‘why are you doing this? You must be mad!’
“Well, I’m doing it for a wonderful wife, mother, sister, daughter and friend. Thank you a million to everyone for their generosity and support so far. It really does mean everything.”
You can support Vance on his JustGiving page, here.
Keep going Vance, you’re doing Clare proud.