VIA MIRROR – A charity fundraiser who ran the length of Britain with a fridge on his back has been taken to hospital with spinal injuries.
Tony Phoenix-Morrison only had feeling in his right leg when he finished the Great North Run on Sunday – on top of completing 1,009 miles from John O’Groats to Land’s End last week.
The 49-year-old was treated in South Shields General Hospital after he was unable to walk.
He was taken from there to Sunderland Royal Hospital for an emergency MRI scan to assess possible spinal damage.
The injury may force the endurance runner to abandon his extreme and unorthodox challenges.
Tony, 49, said: “I was in so much excruciating pain and there were a few times I said I was done to my wife.
“I was broken but there were people with banners, chanting my name and shaking my hand all through the run so I just had to take it one step at a time.
“I am just an ordinary bloke and to have so many people behind me was unbelievable.
“I was in tears by the end from a mixture of pain and pride. It renews my faith.
“I have never felt like I belonged and I have had a difficult life, so getting all that praise is not something I am used to.
“That was the greatest moment of my running career and if that was the last time Tony the Fridge has a day out, then what a day.”
It is thought Tony may have compressed the seminal nerve in his back by carrying the 42.5kg fridge on his epic challenge.
He did his marathon effort to raise funds for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation for cancer research, whose spokeswoman paid tribute to his ‘amazing’ achievement.
“He remains in very high spirits and is bursting with pride,” she said.
Tony is due to appear before the crowd at St James Park on Saturday before the Premier League match against Hull City.
But Tony, who is recovering at home in Hebburn, South Tyneside, may now give up future runs with his fridge.
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