BEING head of her close-knit family was a role which matriarch Minnie Hardy relished.
The mother, grandmother and great-grandmother was a lively soul who always put her nearest and dearest first - even when she was diagnosed with cancer of the oesophagus at the age of 80.
Minnie, of Maltby, Rotherham showed fighting spirit right until she died aged 83 in July.
And now her bravery has inspired grandson Mike Vine to take on a unique charity challenge - running one mile to celebrate every year of his beloved ‘Nannan’s’ life.
Father-of-two Mike, 30, has signed up to a series of fundraising runs for Macmillan Cancer Support and Rotherham Hospice, two charities which gave Minnie and her family invaluable support.
Taking part in a fun run and Sheffield’s Great Yorkshire Run have helped him clock up nine miles, but he still has a long way to go in the Runs to Reach 83 challenge.
With the Liverpool Marathon, Liverpool Half-Marathon, a Santa Dash, Manchester Marathon and Great Manchester Run left to go, the feat will take him until next May to complete.
Mike said: “All throughout her illness, she never complained and carried on as she always would. The determination and willingness to overcome her illness was truly infectious and emotionally inspiring.
“Even at the end, she was thinking about others rather than herself, which just shows what a truly amazing person she was. ”
n Visit www.justgiving.com/teams/michael-vine to sponsor Mike.