Ex council leader to run the Virgin Money London Marathon for Alzheimer’s Research UK

Posted on 30th March 2016

Former Leader of the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames Council Serge Lourie is running the Virgin Money London Marathon for Alzheimer’s Research UK.

Serge Lourie with his mother, Anna Rootchenko
Serge Lourie with his mother, Anna Rootchenko

Serge, who has recently retired after three decades as Leader and Lib Dem Kew Councillor, has continued his love of running, which began in his 30s, while looking after his three grandchildren.

He has been a keen member of parkrun, which is partnered with Alzheimer’s Research UK and offers free timed 5k runs, having completed more than 170 runs over ten years.

This year Serge is pledging to raise £5,000 for Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research charity, after his mum Anna passed away with vascular dementia at the end of 2014.

The 70-year-old has accomplished huge amounts of charity work in London over the years, and is currently Chair of the Kingston Hospital Dementia Appeal.

Explaining his motivation for running the London Marathon and supporting Alzheimer’s Research UK, Serge said:

“It was only a year ago that I lost my mother, Anna.

“She was an expert bridge player who was sharp as anything, and she was still driving until she was 89.

“But in 2010 she showed the typical symptoms of vascular dementia, forgetting things, and she became bitter and moody.

“It was heart-breaking to see her like that. She was looked after at home for two years by carers and by my brother who moved into her flat.

Anna Wissotzky/Lourie 1945?
Serge’s mum in the 1940s

“Finally she had to go into a care home where she was well cared for.

“It was very traumatic for us, and I want to do all I can to help the fight back against dementia.

“I have run four marathons, one in every decade of my life since my 30s, so now I’m 70 it is time for my fifth marathon.

“I feel privileged to have gained a place at the London Marathon 2016 to run for Alzheimer’s Research UK.”

Jessica Hiscocks, Regional Fundraising Officer for Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:

“We couldn’t be more grateful to Serge for taking part in the Virgin Money London Marathon for Alzheimer’s Research UK and we wish him the best of luck.

“There are 850,000 people across the UK living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias today, including more than 72,000 in London and 2,000 in Richmond.

“Alzheimer’s Research UK is leading the charge to stop this devastating disease in its tracks. Our pioneering scientists are searching every day for new treatments and preventions.

 “We rely on public donations and it’s thanks to people like Serge we can help provide crucial resources for our scientists and fund pioneering research, driving the next breakthrough.”

To help Serge reach his target visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/SergeLourie.

Posted in Fundraising news