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Bay of Plenty Rugby Union Staff complete the MoreFM Mount Everest Challenge

Friday, April 12, 2019
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Most people don’t like being called crazy, but Keith Hatwell has no issue with the label, especially when it’s for a good cause.

Keith visited the Bay of Plenty Rugby Union headquarters today to share his journey and the motivation behind participating in the MoreFM Mount Everest Challenge.

The challenge is back for a fifth year where participants climb Mount Maunganui (Mauao) 38 times in 50 days to help raise money for Tauranga Riding for the Disabled. The local charity is an outstanding facility for those suffering physical, mental or developmental disabilities.

Keith, representing Team Syla, has climbed Mauao more than 200 times in the last 50 days. He’s taken on the climb in honour of his grand-daughter Skylar Rose Keating who died in 2017 aged 7, from an inoperable brain tumour called Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma.

In an emotional speech, Keith told BOPRU staff he often got amazed looks from people when they found out how many times he had climbed Mauao.

“The word crazy has been used several times to describe what I’m doing.”

Keith says Skyla was his inspiration during his walks up and down the mountain.

“When I was struggling, I’d often here her voice saying, ‘push on Poppa’. It would keep me going.”

Keith says Tauranga Riding for the Disabled was a worthwhile cause and it gave Skylar some great memories in her short life.

BOPRU chief executive Mike Rogers says seven staff have taken part in the challenge to help raise funds for Riding for the Disabled.

‘’I’m proud of the effort and commitment they have put in to achieve this enormous feat. I also admire all those who have taken part in the challenge.”

In total Bay of Plenty Rugby Union has raised $580.00 for Tauranga Riding for the Disabled through their Givealittle page.

For further information contact:
Greg Taipari | Media Advisor | 021 943 070 | media@boprugby.co.nz

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