A super-fit fundraiser has died suddenly, just weeks before he was to do a 200-mile charity bike ride which had already reached £3,200 in sponsorship.
Now Mike Perry’s 17-year-old son will complete the ride in his father’s memory.
The father was completing the two-day ride in aid of Diabetes UK and to celebrate his 52nd birthday.
He was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in his late teens and died suddenly last week, during a business trip to Birmingham. The cause of death is not yet known.
His wife, Anita, said their family had been deeply touched by the warm tributes and many donations which have come through Mike’s Just Giving and Facebook pages, and the family is determined to continue fundraising as a tribute to him.
The Diabetes UK racing top he planned to wear is to be draped over his coffin at his funeral and his son, Isaac, will wear it when he completes his father’s cycle ride in his memory with a team of friends in June.
Anita said: “Michael was passionate about raising money for Diabetes UK and we want to raise as much as we can as a tribute to him. Isaac hasn’t ridden a bike in years but he is determined to finish the ride for his dad, doing the route that he had planned to take.”
Mike, of Oakleigh View, Baildon, had recently spoken to Diabetes UK about the reasons for doing the challenge.
He told the charity: “I wanted to raise money for Diabetes UK because of the wonderful support they gave me which helped me manage my condition.”
Mike set himself a target of raising £2,000, and donations on his Just Giving page now stand at around £3,200.
Barbara Young, chief executive of Diabetes UK, said: “We are shocked and very sad to learn of Mike’s death at such a tragically young age.
“In due course, we intend to speak to his family about whether there is an appropriate way we can honour his memory and the efforts he went to on our behalf.”
The funeral will be held at Nab Wood Crematorium, Shipley, at 2.30pm tomorrow.
The family has requested no flowers and for all donations to go to Mike’s Just Giving cycle challenge page at justgiving.com/MichaelIanPerry.