The Tyrone village of Eglish will come to a standstill on Saturday week when hundreds of runners will weave their way around the back roads and country lanes in a 10k race in memory of the late Cormac McAnallen.
Organisers of the event, The Cormac Trust, hope that the event will increase further awareness of the disease that tragically caused the death of the Tyrone star whose untimely demise caused shock throughout all sporting disciplines in Ireland.
The disease also claimed the life of Armagh Royal School rugby player John McCall and has become a major concern for the parents of all young sports people.
The race will pass two landmarks, which are especially poignant in the memory of the late, lamented McAnallen — Pairc Chormaic, the site for a new second football pitch for the local GAA club, and Cormac’s home where he lived with his parents in the Brantry.
In addition a fun-run will take place alongside the main event, for the youth and casual walker, over a 2.5km stretch.
Race organiser Ruairi Martin said he was confident the event would attract widespread support throughout the community, as it is an occasion to focus people’s minds on the suddenness of this devastating heart disease.
“Cormac McAnallen was one of Ireland’s greatest sportsmen and great role model for the youth, and to this day he’s still badly missed,” he said.
The Cormac Trust was set up in the wake of Cormac’s death in March 2004 to raise awareness of sudden cardiac death through the promotion of screenings and lobbying for better cardiac provision among the young.
The Trust has also provided defibrillators in scores of football clubs.
Much work has been done, but much remains to be done in the months and years that lie ahead.