Wayde Van Niekerk is not the only Running Hero that South Africans can look up to. Known to fewer people but in many ways just as heroic is the Spiderman Runner that inspires every time a sighting is reported.
Locally he is known as ‘Spinnekop‘. This road running hero shuns personal pride and comfort to bring attention to a cause that is close to his heart, which is the hearts of children. Specifically the hearts of his own young son as well as little Elisa who suffers from a Congenital Heart Defect(CHD).
A little CHD patient may suffer from a range of heart defects. It ranges from simple defects with no symptoms to complex defects with severe, life-threatening symptoms, which can be very difficult to bear for any loving parent.
Although it seems that Eric’s, the Spiderman Runner, son is less severely affected by CHD and will probably outgrow his heart defect, this brave father and husband still go through life with an amazing attitude. Instead of going after his own goals in an inconspicuous manner he trains for is next marathon and perhaps also the Comrades Marathon 2017 in a full Spiderman suit. Come rain or shine Eric can be seen on the streets or at weekend races dressed in his hero suit, always friendly and happy to pose for a selfie or to share a passing thumbs-up.
This attitude of selflessness, approaching life in a slightly different way than is normally expected in order to bring attention the plight of others is what makes this man such a hero. We can all take a leave out of his book by thinking about how we can influence the lives of the people around us for the better by just changing our approach slightly.
So go to the Facebook links in the second paragraph of this piece to like and support this very worthy cause.
If ever you see this fast-moving hero of the streets, show your support with a friendly wave or ‘beep-beep’ of your car’s horn.