Ex Paratrooper helps new heroes

AN ex-paratrooper has strapped on his army boots once again to raise money for a new generation of soldiers. Jim Reid served as a medic in Iraq during the first Gulf War in 1990, and is a former paratrooper with the Territorial Army. This week, he

AN ex-paratrooper has strapped on his army boots once again to raise money for a new generation of soldiers.

Jim Reid served as a medic in Iraq during the first Gulf War in 1990, and is a former paratrooper with the Territorial Army.

This week, he returned to his military roots to take part in the Paras' 10 P Company Challenge - a gruelling 10 kilometre "march" at the Parachute Regiment's army barracks in Catterick, North Yorkshire, carrying a 35lb pack on your back.

The race is actually one of eight entry-level challenges set by the Paras for would-be recruits. To successfully complete the challenge, you must cross the finish line within one hour and 50 minutes.


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Having achieved the feat back in 1981, the 47-year-old clocked an impressive two hours, four minutes and 33 seconds, 28 years later.

"It was hard work, obviously," said Jim, of Grove Place, Welham Green. "But the family were all impressed, including my youngest grandchild, although he was disappointed I didn't come in first!"

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Jim took the challenge in a bid to raise �1,000 for the Help For Heroes charity, which provides help and support for soldiers past and present returning from conflicts all over the world.

"I was very aware of the lack of technical support for guys coming back from that conflict [first Gulf War]," said Jim.

"When I heard about Help for Heroes and this particular run I thought it would be a good idea to raise some money for them."

Jim said he was eyeing up a few more challenges in the future.

"I've started looking into the Commando Challenge, [another 10k challenge] that could be on the cards next, but I can see this one becoming an annual event for me, until I become too much of an old crock!"

It's not too late to sponsor Jim. Visit www.justgiving.com/ Jim-Reid to donate.

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