Injured British Soldier Completes London Marathon in Two Weeks

Daniel GoochAnalyst IMay 9, 2009

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Phil Packer, who is walking the London Marathon, poses at the end of his penultimate day in front of Big Ben before entering the Houses of Parliament at the invitation of Conservative shadow defense secretary, Dr Liam Fox, on May 8, 2009 in London, England. Mr Packer was injured whilst serving in Iraq on the 19th February 2008 and is now a paraplegic. He is walking the route of the London Marathon in 13 days covering two miles per day and is hoping to raise £1 million for the wounded servicemen charity 'Help for Heroes'. He hopes to complete the full 26.2 mile course by 11am on May 9, 2009. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

An injured British soldier has walked the London Marathon on crutches, and has completed the course after 13 days, walking two miles each day.

Major Phil Packer, of the Royal Military Police, lost the use of his legs in a rocket attack while on a patrol in Iraq.

He began the race with 35,000 others on 26 April and finished the event at about 12:30 in the Mall. There, he was presented with a medal from his hero, rower Sir Steve Redgrave.

Maj Packer hopes to raise one million pounds for the soldiers' charity Help For Heroes by doing this challenge.

At the end of the 26 mile course, Major Packer said: "It feels bitter sweet. I heard the news yesterday that four members of the armed forces were killed in Afghanistan, so I'm thinking about those families.

"I would not be standing here but for the work of the doctors and nurses that have looked after me and the reason for doing this is to raise £1m for them.

"It's not about me, it's about the people who are not walking with me.

"It's very humbling, I'm just a soldier and I'm not used to all this."

The officer, who lives in central London, was told by doctors that he would never be able to walk again, after he was injured in Basra in early 2008.

He suffered damage to his ribs and chest, a bruised heart, and lost the motor and sensory use of his legs.