WHILE it’s the international superstar Commonwealth Games winners grabbing all the headlines, could Clydesdale’s true sporting hero of 2014 be a wee four-year-old lassie from Carstairs?
Certainly, little Erin McIlvaney has had to overcome a whole lot more difficulties to get to the starting line than some athletes with nothing worse to moan about than the Glasgow weather.
The fact that Erin is still alive, never mind about to compete in a major sporting event this week, is a near-miracle.
Gazette readers may well recall how, at just six months old, she had to undergo a gruelling liver transplant after being born with a rare medical condition.
Since then wee Erin has not only survived but thrived.
Mum and dad, Jamie and Kirstin, have said their ‘thank you’s’ for that by becoming dedicated fundraisers for transplant charities.
They have raised more than £30,000 for the Children’s Liver Diseases Foundation and the Leeds transplant centre where Erin received her life-saving operation, causes that couldn’t be any closer to their hearts.
At the weekend both parents will look on with pride as their wee girl takes part in the British Transplant Games in Bolton.
Amazingly, at the age of just four, Erin is now something of a veteran at the Games, this being the THIRD time she has competed in its childrens’ section!
This time she will take on three events, the obstacle course, 25m dash and the ball-throw.
For more on this, pick up a copy of this week’s Carluke and Lanark Gazette.