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Family set to raise funds for air ambulance in memory of knife victim JJ

13 April, 2018 — By Emily Finch

Gary and Sarah Donaghey and James Lynch are taking on the Brighton marathon

RELATIVES of a man stabbed to death are running the Brighton marathon to raise money for the London Air Ambulance on Sunday.

Paramedics from the rapid response unit rushed to the aid of Jonathon “JJ” McPhillips after he was stabbed outside the steps of the Town Hall in February last year. He died days later in hospital surrounded by his family.

Mr McPhillips’ cousins, James Lynch, 34, and Sarah Donaghey, 28, alongside JJ’s uncle Gary Donaghey, 45, will be running the full marathon at the popular seaside town.

Two other relatives, Nicole Donaghey and Sharon Cook, will be running the shorter 10km course.

Jonathan ‘JJ’ McPhilips

“If it wasn’t for the air ambulance we would have lost him there and then. They worked so hard to save him,” said Christine Brady, partner of runner Mr Lynch.

Ms Brady was down to run the 10 km but had to pull out at the last minute after suffering from a chest infection.

She said: “With the increase of knife and gun crime, the services of the London Air Ambulance are needed more than ever. I am gutted I can’t run but on the plus side me not taking part means the two kids can come along and get to see their dad do it.”

JJ’s family members have already raised more than £1,000 and a fundraising event is scheduled for this evening (Friday) at the Green Man pub in Essex Road.

“Everyone’s nervous about running but they’re excited as well,” said Ms Brady.

Donations are welcomed at


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