Volunteer lifeboat crew member’s wife runs to repay RNLI for saving his life

Lifeboats News Release

Lizzie Cowan is running 100km to raise awareness and funding for the RNLI after her husband Simon’s crew medical revealed he required life saving surgery.

Lizzie in front of lifeboat doors with Simon in full PPE and sons in school uniform.

RNLI/Rhona Meikle

Lizzie Cowan with her husband Simon (crew) and their sons Sam and Jamie.

Lizzie Cowan is running 100km to raise awareness and funding for the RNLI after her husband Simon’s crew medical revealed he required life saving surgery.

Lizzie Cowan is married to Simon a voluntary crew member of North Berwick RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) she is raising funds and awareness after his routine lifeboat medical revealed he had a life threatening heart condition that required immediate surgery to save his life.

Simon attended his normal lifeboat medical with his local GP. He felt fit and healthy and was 49 years old with no history of illness. He was an active member of the local rowing club and the lifeboat crew. The GP detected a heart murmur and he was sent to get an Echo cardiogram. This revealed a serious defect in his heart valve and he wasn’t allowed out of hospital until he had lifesaving heart surgery.

On speaking to Lizzie she said “I could have chosen rowing it's one of my passions, but running is something I have to dig deep to accomplish, but I wanted to challenge myself and pay respect to how hard Simon worked and about reflecting on his strength to recover.

I wanted to raise money and awareness for the RNLI. It has been a hard year for them as a charity to raise funds for training and to supply all the equipment. They do a fantastic job saving lives but without their medical, there is a good chance that I wouldn’t have had Simon and my kids wouldn’t have had their Dad. He gives up time to save others but we never expected that the RNLI would save his life. That’s why I want to give something meaningful back for we will be forever greatful.”

Simon said “ I think its great and I’m very proud of her as fundraising is so difficult at the moment,”

If you can support Lizzie in her fiundraising for the RNLI please go to

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/lizzie-cowan

Remember if you see something that concerns you or someone in difficulty call 999 and ask for the coastguard.

Notes to editors

  • North Berwick lifeboat station has been operating since 1860. To learn more about the lifeboat station go to: [www.rnli.org] or RNLI North Berwick Lifeboat on facebook.




RNLI media contacts


Rhona Meikle, Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer at North Berwick, 07767 251023, rhona_meikle@rnli.org.uk


Martin Macnamara, RNLI Regional Media Officer for Scotland, 01738 642986, 07920 365929, martin_macnamara@rnli.org.uk



Gemma McDonald, RNLI Regional Media Manager for Scotland, 01738 642956, 07826 900639, gemma_mcdonald@rnli.org.uk


RNLI Press Office, 01202 336789


RNLI online

For more information on the RNLI please visit rnli.org. News releases and other media resources, including RSS feeds, downloadable photos and video, are available at the RNLI News Centre rnli.org/news-and-media.



Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,200 lives.


Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and, in a normal year, more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.

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