Archive - Thursday, 16 September 2010
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Greatest survivor skydives to victory at Netheravon
Skydiver Cpl Deane Smith of Calne took part in a Jump4Heroes free-fall on September 11 to raise money for The Veterans Charity.
Britain’s most injured soldier to survive Afghanistan, Ben Parkinson, also took part in the 15,000 ft skydive at Airfield Camp in Netheravon.
Mr Parkinson lost both legs and suffered 40 separate injuries after stepping on a landmine in 2006, and it was thought he would never walk again.
However, Mr Parkinson has defied doctors to become the patron of The Veterans Charity, completing a marathon on crutches to help raise thousands of pounds.
Cpl Smith, 37, of Lower Compton, Cherhill, has been in the Army for 21 years and has been parachuting for 14.
The Royal Engineer Para Commando said that part of his job was getting people like Ben out after they’ve been injured.
“It’s a tough thing, to see them getting hurt, then getting put on a vehicle, through the system and then into hospital,” he said.
“It makes me proud to see some of the men going on to do things like this.”
The Jump4Heroes team has completed around 20,000 jumps in total for the military and for charity.
Cpl Smith, who will go to Afghanistan next year, said the military had little time for fundraising but does its best with publicity.
“We want people to know that men are still coming home with terrible injuries, or no visible injuries at all, but terrible mental scars.
“We want to raise as much awareness as possible.”
To donate to The Veteran Charity visit www.justgiving.com/parkisplatoon, details on Jump4Heroes at www.jump4heroes.com