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Will Eykamp's Memorial Run/Bike Challenge
$11,300 Raised
113% of $10k goal
133 contributors
2 Years running
Please help Lucy Eykamp raise awareness for mental illness as she runs/bikes 730km from Brisbane to Tamworth (Aus) in 9 days; like doing 17 marathons; in memory of her brother Will who sadly took his own life. All funds donated to Schizophrenia research. More ...

A Message from Lucy

Hi Everyone, thanks for taking the time to visit this webpage. My name is Lucy Eykamp. I along with my parents Jenny and Donald and siblings Kadi and Jamie we suffered an immeasurable tragedy last April when our brother Will lost his long battle with mental illness.

As a family we were at a loss how our brother could have gone from the most fun loving and adventurous youth to a withdrawn, lonely and clearly troubled adult.  We were in the dark about what he was going through.  Over the years we were at a loss to help; he spurned assistance & information and advice was hard to find. We felt helpless as we watched him deteriorate within society despite our efforts. 

Finally after years of anguish he was involuntarily assessed and was officially diagnosed with Schizophrenia at age 40. However his suffering didn’t end there as one of the most heartbreaking aspects of this illness is that sufferers often will not acknowledge their problem or accept medical help and in fact, as was the case for Will, are paranoid of any help and fight against it.

The negative stigma associated with Schizophrenia is so strong and funding so limited that the help offered in some ways isolated him further and made his situation worse.  In the end the despair of his isolation and loneliness and realization of his bleak future lead him to end his pain.

The very sad part, and what he documented in his diaries, was that beneath the mask of his illness he was a loving man and all he wanted out of life was to live simply on a farm with a wife and family.  

What is Schizophrenia?

Even with the internet most people still have very little knowledge of Schizophrenia and the terrible hardship for the people involved. 

“Schizophrenia has a long history of neglect, demonization and concealment. Even today, the illness does not receive the levels of public attention and research funding warranted by the numbers of individuals and families it affects.” Source:, 16 February 2014

What is most scary is, based on the Schizophrenia Research Institute, 1 in 100 people will suffer from Schizophrenia, with nearly 5% committing suicide.  For more information visit: 


The Will Eykamp Memorial Fund and the Challenge

After Will’s death his family and close friends wanted to try and help by starting a memorial fund in his name with the funds being donated to worthy charities and research organisations. For this challenge, all monies raised will be donated to the Schizophrenia Research Institute of Australia and the Schizophrenia Society of Canada.  The fund will also help other families that are unfortunately suffering a similar situation.  

Will had great physical strength and endurance and on several occasions travelled a lonely path; riding his beloved horses from Brisbane to Tamworth and camping rough along the route.  He also enjoyed endurance activities, particularly running long distances; something we share as siblings. 

In his memory and with the support and help of family and friends, I am planning a personal challenge to run and bike from Brisbane to Tamworth, a distance of about 730km.  The goal being to honour and commemorate his life and share our common joy of endurance by running and biking a similar route.  We also hope this challenge will raise awareness to confront the stigma surrounding Schizophrenia and raise funds towards research that improves societies understanding and acceptance of this illness.  Ultimately we hope to improve even a little the lives of everyone affected by the illness.

The Run / Bike Challenge Details

The Challenge will start in Brisbane on May 9, 2014 from our family home in Albany Creek, Brisbane and by running and biking only, will travel south via backcountry roads, trails and stock routes over nine days to Tamworth, ending in time for a celebration of Will’s birthday on 19th May.  The plan is to follow the routes Will travelled as closely as possible.  The Challenge will be supported by family and friends and camping along the way.  The route goes through State Forests, several National Parks and through rural Queensland and NSW.  Detailed maps and information is provided below.  

The Route


Day 1 

Start from our faily home in Albany Creek, Brisbane and run 30 km through Bunyaville Forest Reserve and then through Brisbane Forest Park to Lake Manchester. From here bike 30 km bike to the historic town of Rosewood near Ipswich.

Day 2

100 km bike from Rosewood heading south through grazing lands to the border, following the Bicenntenial National Trail and finishing at Teviot Brooks campground near the  southern end of the Main Range National Park.

Day 3

103 km bike from Teviot Brooks camp ground, continuing to follow the Bicenntenial National Trail, across the Great Divide at the Head to Killarney, thence to the NSW-QLD border, following along the border before eventually heading west to Stanthorpe.

Day 4 

A 70 km bike west from Stanthorpe, then a 15 km run through Sundown National Park.  Camping for the evening in Broadwater camping ground on western side of Sundown National Park.

Day 5

100 km bike from Sundown National Park south to the border crossing over the Dumaresq River at Mingalo Station Road, south along Brunxer Highway and backcountry roads to the Severn river at Strathbogie and camping on the river.

Day 6 

A 13 km bike ride south from Severn River and then west along the Inverell-Deepwater road, before running 11 km cross-country through Kings Plain National Park and then a 43 km bike ride into Inverell.  

Day 7 -  A 100 km bike south from Inverell to Bundarra, following stock routes and backcountry roads before finishing near the small town of Kingston in the New England Tablelands.

Day 8 – 100 km bike south from Kingston to Bendemeer on the New England Highway before heading east and south folllowing a similar path to Will finishing at Limbri on the Tamworth to Armidale railway. 

Day 9 – Final 30 km run along the railway, through Nemingha then following the Cockburn and Peel Rivers into Tamworth.

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