The cousin of a paramedic killed in a crash while at work will be running the London Marathon to continue his life-saving legacy and raise money for the London Air Ambulance.

Mark Pell, originally from Loughton, Redbridge, died on April 13, 2022 in hospital, aged 51, after a road collision while on a training course in north Wales.

He joined the London Ambulance Service’s (LAS) motorcycle response unit 29 years ago, spending most of his career at Whipps Cross and Buckhurst Hill ambulance stations.

He later joined the motorcycle response unit and was a mentor with the operational placement centre in Ilford during the Covid pandemic.

Ilford Recorder: Mark Pell served with the London Ambulance Service for 28 yearsMark Pell served with the London Ambulance Service for 28 years (Image: Victoria Wright)

Mark’s cousin Victoria Wright said: “He was a man made of solid gold – he lived to help people in everything he did.

“He was funny, cheeky & charming.

“He was there for everyone and anyone who needed him. He was my big cousin, he was my hero.

"Not a day goes by where we do not think about Mark, his untimely death has left an enormous hole in our family and the emergency services far too big to comprehend. Our beacon of light in our family is gone."

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Victoria, 36, is running the London Marathon on April 23, 2023 to raise money for the London Air Ambulance in memory of her cousin.

She said: “Obviously he had a lot of colleagues at the air ambulance and saw first-hand what they did.

“And he also needed the air ambulance in Wales so it felt like the right charity to do.”

Ilford Recorder: Victoria Wright is training to run the London Marathon on April 23Victoria Wright is training to run the London Marathon on April 23 (Image: Victoria Wright)

Victoria, who lives in Wanstead, continued: “Having two young children, its been hard to process the grief and shock of losing a loved one so tragically, but having a focus to run a marathon in Mark's memory and do some good for a charity close to his heart has been good.

“So, in terms of my grief… I am just determined to keep Mark’s memory going and to make good of a tragic situation and keep trying to save lives in Mark’s name.

“I can’t do much but I can run and I know that by running the marathon and raising money it will save somebody’s life.”

READ MORE: Man taken to hospital after Ilford flat fire caused by unattended chip pan

Ilford Recorder: Victoria hopes to raise £2,500 for the London Air Ambulance in Mark's memoryVictoria hopes to raise £2,500 for the London Air Ambulance in Mark's memory (Image: Victoria Wright)

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Victoria has so far raised almost £1,000 and eventually hopes to make this £2,500 for the air ambulance.

She said: “Running a marathon will not bring Mark back but I hope by hitting my £2,500 fundraising target it will help continue his life saving legacy and stop another family having to go through the pain we have been through.”

She added: “It’s been a nice time, a year on, to be able to process his loss and I think as we approach the year anniversary and the run I think it feels like that lap of honour in his name and probably my time to say goodbye to him…

“He was our hero – our real life hero.”