OBITUARY: Tribute to ex-chairman of Leighton Buzzard Athletics Club who died after collapsing while out on a run

Former Leighton Buzzard Athletics Club chairman John Adam
Former Leighton Buzzard Athletics Club chairman John Adam

A former chairman of Leighton Buzzard Athletics Club has died after collapsing while out for a run at Tiddenfoot Waterside Park.

John Adam, 76, who was one of the club’s longest standing members, passed away despite the best efforts of the ground paramedics and air ambulance on May 4.

Tiddenfoot was one of John’s regular running routes, and a statement from the athletics club paid tribute to the Leighton Buzzard resident and said he would be greatly missed.

It read: “All at Leighton Buzzard Athletic Club were very sad to hear the news last week that one of our longest standing members and a former chairman of the club had died at the age of 76 while out for a run.

“John Adam joined the club in February 1987 after he moved to Leighton from Milton Keynes. He became a member during a period when there was a real running boom and we had many vets of a very high standard.

“John was a good runner and certainly helped in many team competitions, particularly in off-road competitions, which he loved.

“Throughout his time with the club he regularly entered tough hilly races such as the Aldbury 5 and the infamous Coombe Hill Run as well as the Herbert’s Hole 10K, while encouraging others to join him.

“He was always very keen to be part of a relay team, and this continued right into his seventies when he could still be found on a Saturday in June taking on the mud and undulations of the Greensand Ridge and following the race to its conclusion in a village pub. Then at that bar, when there was a line-up of ales and lagers you always knew the one cider in the order would be destined for John.”

The statement continued: “He was a good runner on the road too and as one of the more senior members in recent years, set many records in the over 65 and over 70 age groups. In his younger years a 39:03 10K as a 45-year-old was probably his peak, but still running just over 40 minutes for 5 miles at the age of 65 is pretty impressive too. Even last year he was still regularly taking on the Rushmere parkrun course and enjoying his running.

“John was a very popular member socially too. He followed just about all sports and was always keen to enter into a discussion about any of them, particularly rugby, and he was a regularly visitor to Saracens with some other club members.

“John will be greatly missed by the club and it’s members and we send our heartfelt condolences to his family. He will be long remembered by all those who came to get to know him and his contributions to the club will be forever retained in the club’s archives.”

John’s funeral will be held on Monday, May 21, 10am at Oak Chapel crematorium in Milton Keynes.