Hopetoun man honoured in motor neurone walk

TWO men walking from Melbourne to the Mallee for motor neurone disease will arrive in Dadswells Bridge on Monday night.

Tim Solly and Matt Sofoulis left Federation Square for Hopetoun on Tuesday last week.

The 421-kilometre journey is aimed at promoting awareness of motor neurone disease and raising money to help families in regional areas.

Tim's father, Ken Solly, said the pair was more than half way to reaching its $50,000 fundraising goal.

"It's been inspirational, as a father, to see your son do what is nearly a marathon a day for 12 days," he said. "They've been training for months, and have given up a couple of weeks to raise money for the Motor Neurone Disease Association of Victoria. We couldn't be more proud of them."

The pair hopes to arrive in Dadswells Bridge in time for a barbecue dinner, from 4.30pm to 6.30pm, at the town's public hall.

Mr Solly said his son and Mr Sofoulis had hosted similar events in each town along their journey.

There will be two barbecues in Horsham, from 4.30pm until 6.30pm in May Park on Tuesday and Wednesday.

"The idea behind that is for any sufferers or people who have lost family members to motor neurone disease to come and see that people are supporting them," Mr Solly said.

It is an intensely personal cause for the Solly family, inspired by one of their own: Darren Solly, who died of the disease in 2000.

"It has been 14 years since Darren died, and Tim has always wanted to do something to recognise Darren's life and honour the battle he had with MND," Mr Solly said.

Wet weather and injury has marred the journey, but Mr Solly said the men had their heads high.

"It's been raining like hell and Matt's got crook shins, so they've been walking since the first two-and-a-half days," he said.

They have been supported along the way by family and friends.

The journey will end in Hopetoun, Darren Solly's home town.

Mr Solly said people could contribute to the cause at https://createyourowneventmndvic.everydayhero.com/au/melb2mallee.

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