I very sad to tell you that Adrian Haughton, co-Event Director at Winchester parkrun, has died. He passed away peacefully at home with his family yesterday.
Adrian was a tireless volunteer and passionate supporter of parkrun and many other good causes around Winchester.
I didn’t know him before I started going to parkrun but he was one of the first people to stand out; primarily because he would always overtake me, but also because he introduced himself to me, when I didn’t know many other people, in true generous parkrun spirit.
Adrian seemed to have boundless energy. He loved running. He was always engaged in some challenge. His family holidays revolved around adventure. He also loved chocolate.
When I asked him to share the responsibility for the Event Director role with me, he didn’t hesitate. I relied on him for his clear insight, strong opinions, and down-to-earth approach.
My abiding memory of Adrian will be his relentless positivity and can-do attitude. Whatever the challenge we faced, Adrian took it on and saw it through with enthusiasm. For me that was most inspiring during his final months. Despite repeated set-backs in his fight against cancer he was, without exception, upbeat and looking forward. When I asked him how he was coping emotionally he would always brush it off - “Look, it is what it is. I can’t change it. But I can enjoy the time that I have”.
It’s sad that due to the pandemic we can’t remember him all together at a parkrun. We will get a chance to do that, eventually, but in the meantime maybe do an extra 5k in his honour, or aim for a new PB, or just lace up your shoes and get out when you might feel like staying on the sofa.
Adrian, I will always be motivated by your example, to enjoy life and keep striving. Although I’ve lost track of the number of times you beat me at parkrun, what abides is seeing you ahead of me, being inspired to dig just a little deeper, and, at least once or twice, catching up with you.