Cambridgeshire teenager sheds the pounds ahead of ‘dream’ skydive above the Fens
PUBLISHED: 14:21 18 March 2020 | UPDATED: 14:21 18 March 2020
A Cambridgeshire teenager has lost a massive five stone in weight as he prepares to fly from the sky in aid of his stepdad who suffers from a muscle-wasting disease.
Danny Parker will take on the 10,000ft jump from Chatteris airfield to support his stepdad Peter Neville who has Charcot-Marie Tooth disease (CMT), which is a group of inherited conditions that affect the peripheral nerves outside the main central nervous system.
It has taken Danny four years to reduce his weight to 11st 6lbs, and now he is ready to do his bit for his chosen charity, Muscular Dystrophy UK.
Danny, 17, said: “I’m taking this jump to raise awareness and funds for research into muscle-wasting conditions.
“It’s been a dream to jump. I saw a skydive while fishing with Pete at Block Fen near Ely in the spring of 2016, and I thought ‘I can do that’, before realising I needed to lose a huge amount of weight first.”
A change of diet and regular cycling has enabled Danny to take on the skydive, which he has raised over £525 for, and progress to this point has never stopped.
He said: “Three to four miles on my bike a day and boom, it fell off.
“Last year it was becoming a reality and I said to Peter ‘look, I can do this now’. Pete said I could do it for the charity and checked out the MDUK website. Bring it on.”
Peter runs a CMT support group on Facebook which has over 1,400 members and has a lot of pride in what his stepson has already achieved.
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He said: “We now have three private chat groups – men, women and teens through (to their) twenties – all offering support with mental health and other issues arising from CMT.”
Speaking on his stepson’s achievements, Peter added: “I am extremely proud of him. Not only has he followed his dream to do a skydive, he has lost an enormous amount of weight and in the process developed a much healthier lifestyle.”
CMT is a progressive condition where symptoms including muscle weakness and numbness start to appear between the ages of five and 15, but these can develop until middle age or older.
The skydive aims to take place later this year.
You can support Danny by donating through his JustGiving page at https://bit.ly/33ufqCQ.
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