Three brave employees from Station Garage - the family-run Skoda dealership in Horsham - took on the UK’s highest sky dive last month and rose over £1,500 in sponsorship for SERV Sussex - an incredible charity which provides night time transportation of blood, blood products and other urgent medical items for NHS hospitals across Sussex.
Paul Garner, Holly Salmon and Colin Leitch flew beyond the clouds (almost three miles up from the ground in Salisbury) to undertake the breath-taking 15,000ft skydive - the highest possible altitude from which to parachute jump in the UK - where they endured a pulse-racing freefall for almost an entire minute!
The trio, came together to undertake this challenge for one important reason - to help SERV Sussex continue their vital service as it is completely run by volunteers who transport urgent blood, samples and patient notes 365 days a year. The volunteers do this in their own time, using their own transport, and out of the kindness of their own hearts as the NHS has no formal or free way of doing so. This selflessness enables Sussex hospitals to focus their resources on patient care.
Whilst collectively Paul, Holly and Colin beat their fundraising target of £1,500, the funds are still being collected so they are hoping to get closer to £2,000 once all the donations are in.
Skydiver Colin commented:
“I never dreamt I’d commit myself to a skydive as the thought quite frankly filled me with fear but when I saw the opportunity to take on the challenge for such a good cause I knew I had to push myself. I can’t quite describe the feeling of the whole experience. I was absolutely petrified on the flight up and couldn’t quite believe just how high we were above the ground. When I finally jumped from the plane my initial reaction was panic, but then realisation sets in that you’re safe, you can relax and it was utterly amazing - one of the best experiences of my life.
“The best feeling though is knowing that I have helped the team raise the vital funds. SERV Sussex is an amazing charity completely run by volunteers. They provide their time so selflessly so anything we could do to help them continue this incredible service is very worthwhile.”
James Thorpe, Dealer Principal at Station Garage in Horsham, added:
“At Station Garage family and team work means everything to us so we are very proud of Paul, Holly and Colin for taking on such a huge challenge - especially as a skydive was something completely out of their comfort zones.
“SERV Sussex has been our charity of choice for some time now so the fact that they have undertaken this challenge and helped raise funds is truly inspirational. On behalf of the whole team I would like to congratulate and thank them for their efforts."