A soldier is planning to run 135 miles today in memory of his cousin – a doctor killed by the Taliban while helping desperate people in Afghanistan.

The Comet: Dr Karen WooDr Karen Woo (Image: Archant)

Steven Muir, who grew up in Stevenage and has been in the army since 2002, will be running in the Cyprus Ultra Marathon and is hoping to raise £1,000 for The Karen Woo Foundation.

Karen, who lived in Brixham Close in Stevenage, was killed in August 2010 while working with medical charity International Assistance Mission.

The 36-year-old had been part of an 11-strong team taking medical aid to villagers when they were ambushed by gunmen with automatic weapons.

Karen was shot twice and killed, along with nine others of the mostly US team.

The Karen Woo Foundation was set up in Karen’s memory, focusing on supporting projects in Afghanistan which provide healthcare to communities which have little or no access to basic medical provision.

Steven, who is currently stationed in Cyprus, said: “My cousin did amazing work by selflessly going to remote parts of Afghanistan to provide healthcare and surgery to those who would never have such help. Sadly, during these great deeds, her life was taken.

“The Karen Woo Foundation allows her legacy of proving healthcare to the remotest parts of war-ravaged Afghanistan to continue.

“I will be running in the Cyprus Ultra race for this worthy cause. Only two people have ever finished it as the terrain is mountainous. I hope to complete it in under 40 hours, although the cut-off is 45 hours.”

To sponsor Steven, visit justgiving.com/ZedMuir.

For more about The Karen Woo Foundation, visit karenwoofoundation.org.