Harpenden plumber taps new heights for heroes
PLUMBER Kevin Terry is swapping his spanners and wrenches for thermals and waterproof clothing as he embarks on a once-in-a-lifetime experience, scaling Africa’s highest peak for charity.
The 49-year-old of Eastcote Drive, Harpenden, will be joined by son Lee Terry and Lee’s friend David Kiff, both 25 and of Harpenden, as they climb Mount Kilimanjaro in north-east Tanzania on the self-funded trip which will see all money raised going directly to Help for Heroes.
The charity raises funds to support members of the Navy, Army and Royal Air Force wounded in current conflicts, for example to help pay for personnel recovery centres.
The trio were keen to support Help for Heroes as Lee and David have friends in the armed forces. Kevin said he had recently met one serviceman who had lost both legs when he was just 19 years old:“he is so independent, it’s unbelievable.”
One of the risks the men face during the six-day climb, which begins tomorrow (August 6) is altitude sickness as the mountain is 5,895 metres high. Using the Shira trail – one of six routes – Kevin and his team will carry daily rations, water and spare clothing only. They will sleep in tents on the side of the mountain and cook over open fires.
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Once in Kilimanjaro National Park the climbers will have no outside contact for more than a week. The temperature could well dip to minus 15 degrees at the summit.
Training for the past eight months in preparation Kevin, Lee and David have kept busy trekking to the summit of the highest peaks in England, Wales, the British Isles and Spain – however even the highest of these, Sierra Nevada, is more than 2000 metres shorter than Kilimanjaro.
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Kevin said he felt a “little bit apprehensive because people tell you so many different stories [about the climb]; I think it’s how your body adapts to the altitude – that will be the interesting thing. I’m looking forward to it.”
To show your support for the trio’s fundraising climb for Help for Heroes, please see www.justgiving.com/terrysclimbkili