TV star Nick Knowles has backed a charity challenge on Cumbrae in memory of a much-missed community police officer.

Around 150 family, friends and colleagues of Stephen McCormick are due to take part in the 'Shrek Trek 2' fundraiser later this year.

The event is affectionately titled in memory of the popular bobby, who passed away in 2019 from bowel cancer.

Stephen, who once won a bravery award for rescuing a drowning child, was well known for his time on the beat serving Largs and district for many years.

He was in his mid-40s when he died following a short, brave battle against the illness.

The DIY SOS presenter has sent a message to participants and urged more to sign up for the challenge on September 18.

He said: "I'd like to show my support for the participants of Shrek Trek 2. 

"Stevie McCormick, who was a loving husband to Pamela, proud father of Rebecca and beloved colleagues to many in Police Scotland, passed away due to bowel cancer 2019.

"He was taken far too soon and that is why it is important to keep his memory alive this year by raising money for Bowel Cancer UK.

"It involves two laps of Cumbrae, running or walking, and I'm asking everyone to help raise funds which can be used to tackle this awful disease.

"Best wishes to all involved for a successful event - it means a lot to all of Stevie's colleagues, family and friends."

Former Largs police inspector Colin Convery, who is helping to co-ordinate the event, said: "We approached a number of celebs and Nick agreed to do a video.

"It was very kind and thoughtful."

Stephen was well known in Largs, Fairlie and Millport for his friendly and approachable manner.

In 2009, he jumped into the water to help rescue a youngster at Saltcoats Harbour, but just a year later, was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome - an acute disease of the nervous system in which the nerves in the arms and legs become inflamed and stop working, leading to limb paralysis.

This led to an affectionate 'Shrek Trek' in his honour, with a 24-hour charity cycle round the Isle of Cumbrae arranged to raise funds for a support group.

Stephen beat the disease and returned to work with the force's Operational Support Division, before cancer tragically claimed his life.

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