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Return to Romance: One Man, 1,250 Miles, All in the Name of Love


Every now and then, you wander across those stories that make the tears well up in your eyes; stories about amazing people doing amazing things that you can’t help but admire them for. Nigel Hearnden is one of those people.

Nigel Hearnden and Anne Hearnden were your typical storybook married couple, the kind that you never hear about anymore. For 29 years, they loved each other, were there for each other, and supported each other. And when Anne was diagnosed with cancer in August 2001, Nigel was with her every step of the way. With her amazing strength and her loyal partner ever at her side, she went through 20 months of chemotherapy, three invasive operations, and overcame three different types of cancer: Hodgkin’s lymphoma, bowel cancer and liver cancer (twice).

Tragically, despite her many victories and accomplishments, Anne unexpectedly died in November 2005 from a heart infection.

Nigel and Anne had planned to go to Rome for their 30th anniversary. But even though Anne isn’t with him, Nigel is still making the journey. On foot.

Nigel began his journey on January 27th in Gosport, Hampshire. Since that time he has walked 856 miles, and plans to reach Rome on May 16th, which is three years to the day he was last in Rome with Anne. On top of all of this, he is raising £50,000 – $98,766.77 in USD – for the various charities that Anne supported. He has already raised £7,557.00 – $14,927.92 – to date.

Nigel has a LiveJournal where he consistently updates, putting his heart out for the world to see and telling his readers about his progress, his ups, and his downs. His story is a powerful reminder about the endurance, the dedication, and the love that the human race is capable of.