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Claire Squires London Marathon: Just Giving Donations Rocket To One Million

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Claire Squires, who collapsed and died during the London Marathon, has raised £1 million for the Samaritans after more than 50,000 members of the public contributed to her Just Giving page.

The 30-year-old, who was supporting the charity in memory of her dead brother, will be buried next week alongside Grant Squires, who died in 2001, aged 25.

When the hairdresser started last Sunday's marathon, she had raised £500 for the Samaritans but after less than a week the figure rocketed, after well-wishers donated to the charity.

Catherine Johnstone, Chief Executive of Samaritans, said: “The circumstances under which the donations have reached £1million are heartbreaking, but we would like to thank everyone for their support. We are deeply touched by the public’s reaction to Claire Squires’ very sad death.

Claire Squires: London Marathon Runner Who Died 'Suffered From Heart Condition'

“No decisions have yet been made about where the donations from Claire’s tribute fund will be spent. As agreed with Claire’s family, we will be sitting down with them at an appropriate time to discuss what they feel she would have liked these donations to fund. However, we want to reassure everyone who has kindly contributed that every penny will go solely to the delivery of our helpline service.”

Nicola Short said her friend's family was devastated but were drawing solace from the good wishes and kindness of the British public.

She told BBC Breakfast: "Obviously they are extremely devastated but they're together, they are a strong family and they are close, they have spent all week together round at Claire's mum and dad's house.

"Obviously the more money that's coming in is overwhelming but it is giving them a little bit of comfort to know she has managed to do such a great thing."

Miss Squires was the 11th participant to die since the event began in 1981, and collapsed in Birdcage Walk, near St James's Park, on the final stretch of the 26.2-mile course, with only one bend left before the finish line.

She was raising money for the Samaritans, for whom her mother Cilla had volunteered for more than 20 years.

See below for pictures of Claire Squires:

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