A schoolboy sufferer of Crohn’s disease and his friend sang their way to the end of a challenging 82-mile walk to raise money for charity.
Gavin Mackay, 12, of Mosstodloch, and friend James Leslie conquered the 82-mile East Highland Way, arriving in Fort William at the weekend after a week of walking and camping.
Gavin, who was diagnosed with Crohn’s three years ago, began planning the trip with 13-year-old James, of Fochabers, when he was recovering from a major bowl operation.
The second year pupils at Milne’s High School in Fochabers, hoped by walking from Aviemore to Fort William they could raise £1,000 for both Crohn’s and Colitis UK and the Archie Foundation.
But the pair have smashed their target – raising an amazing £5,500.
The duo were jubilant when they reached the “Sore Feet” statue in Fort William that marks the end of the walk, and said they sang songs during the trek – even belting out their own version of The Proclaimers’ hit I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles).
Gavin and James were joined on the expedition by their fathers Stewart Mackay and Roger Leslie, who also camped in their own tent near the boys each night.
Mr Mackay said: “Gavin’s health has not been too good. He was put on steroids a couple of months ago and they are causing pain in his joints.
“However, he had been walking and training in the gym in preparation, and the support we’ve had from people and businesses in Mosstodloch, Fochabers and across Moray has been fantastic.
“The boys were brilliant, and never once wavered.
“They sang all the way along and even cheered us up during the worst bits of the walk.”