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Hunty’s Column: Reading To Fulham Walk

Our columnist talks about why he’ll be walking from the MadStad to Craven Cottage in April.

Fulham v Southampton - The Emirates FA Cup Third Round Photo by Matt Watson/Southampton FC via Getty Images

So, transfer deadline day passed without losing Liam Moore, and we gained two quality signings in Chris Martin and Tommy Elphick. This could be Paradise? Nope! Tommy gets injured and we go back to our poor selves against Millwall at home.

We then saw a repeat of that against Boro, and we’re now in deep Swindon. Let’s hope we can get ourselves out of this mess, with or without Stam. It’s enough to test your sanity!

Did you see in the news last week about the Scottish footballer David Cox?

He was abused on the pitch by opposition players because he opened up about his battle with depression. Sadly, it didn’t grab the headlines In the same way as Sanchez signing for Man Utd for stupid money.

If it was in another workplace, it would be classed as bullying and dealt with by the appropriate channels. Bullying is wrong, the stigma around mental illness is wrong. But do you know what we can do? We can fight back and make a difference.

That’s what myself, some other Royals and Fulham fans are doing. Standing together as one, to break down the stigma around mental illness and suicide prevention.

Yep as you might have seen, we are walking from the Mad Stad to Craven Cottage on 9th/10th April. This is before the game there that Tuesday night. This isn’t some cheap publicity thrill for any of us, this is about trying to make a difference.

Why?

In previous columns I’ve have talked about mental health, with a number of ex-players and their own battles. One in four people will be affected by a mental health issue this year. I’m sure many of you may have been affected personally by it, one way or another.

Mental illness doesn’t care what job you have, or what car you drive. Sadly it is never going to go away.

However by talking about it, in the same way as you would have a broken limb, we can make a difference.

Do you know what? It’s alright to ask someone if they are ok!

So look folks, this walk is in aid of CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably). They focus on prevention of male suicide in people under 45 years of age. The reason? Well I’m male, and I’ve made it to 46 .

Seriously though, there are so many good organisations out there doing good work. Please go check them out.

So why now?

Linkin Park lead singer Chester Bennington was a truly talented guy, with a young family and also a daughter named Lily. He fought his own demons, before taking his own life last summer.

There’s a video of him doing a TV carpool karaoke five days before his death. He looked so genuinely happy then.

LINKIN PARK & Ken Jeong - Carpool Karaoke

Watch our Carpool Karaoke episode with Ken Jeong now, streaming for free right here on Facebook.

Posted by Linkin Park on Thursday, October 12, 2017

It makes no sense, mental illness makes no sense at times. However at least if we try and talk about it, we might help one person.

One of Chester’ s last songs One More Light says it so better than I ever could, so just take a listen.

If a group of us walking ourselves into the ground helps make a difference then it’s so worth it. If you could join us for the walk, come and support us or even donate I would be very grateful.

Please keep spreading the word it would be lovely to meet you.

Follow its progress on Twitter @Huntyroyal #ReadingToFulhamWalk

And here’s my JustGiving page: