Chelsea Pensioner, John Honey, is taking on the challenge of skydiving this September to raise money for breast cancer research, alongside friend and Breast Cancer Now team member, Dawn.
It’s hard to miss John Honey, 75, when he arrives at Breast Cancer Now’s London office. He’s wearing the distinctive scarlet coat and peaked cap of the Chelsea Pensioner uniform.
"I’m not really sure what I’m letting myself in for", says John. "I like flying, but normally I stay inside of the plane!"
On Sunday 27 September 2015, John will join Dawn Huggins, CEO Project Manager at Breast Cancer Now as the pair each take on a tandem skydive to raise money for Breast Cancer Now.
Initially, they had a target of £1,000, but fundraising has gone well. Now John and Dawn are looking to raise at least £2,500.
Why the pair decided to jump
Dawn, who served 22 years in the military (but admits she never had to jump out of a plane!), met John at the Tower of London, where she lives with her Beefeater husband.
John expressed an interest in doing something alongside her for the charity. So when Dawn mentioned wanting to do a skydive to John, he says: "I agreed to do it almost straight away. Dawn gave me the option of backing out. She said, ‘are you sure?’ and I said, ‘yes, why not?' It’s just a bit of fun."
In fact, now it seems that John is looking forward to it more than Dawn. He’s read the information - "I can bend my legs, that’s all you need to be able to do", he says - and is the one now reassuring Dawn.
"You’ll enjoy it when you’re up there", he says. "I’m just hoping it’s a clear day. It’s an early start; we don’t want to get all the way there and not be able to do it.
"It’s really important that we make advancements in breast cancer. Improvements that are made will benefit people worldwide. That’s why I wanted to raise money for Breast Cancer Now."
Dawn says: "I have worked with this charity for almost a year, and they are an amazing bunch of people who have got one common aspiration – to stop people dying from breast cancer by 2050. I am a tad nervous about the skydive, to say the least, but it is worth it to help achieve this goal!"
Sponsor John and Dawn
If you’d like to sponsor John and Dawn, please visit their JustGiving page.
Fancy skydiving yourself?
Take part in an exhilarating challenge to support breast cancer research.