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Eileen jumps from the skies to help war heroes
Ulster Military Vehicle Club (UMVC) and Wartimeliving History Association (WLHA) member Eileen Atkinson recently took part in a sponsored tandem parachute jump in Garvagh for the charity “Help for Heroes”. The UMVC and WLHA each donated £250 to Eileen for this good cause and Eileen eventually raised over £1500 with promises of more donations to come. The two clubs presented Eileen with her £500 cheque just before her parachute jump was due to take place.
Admitting to being absolutely “petrified” of heights Eileen made no attempt to disguise her fear as she prepared to throw herself out of a plane at 13,000 feet. “I’m petrified of heights. I can’t even go on a Ferris Wheel and I was shaking like a leaf when they were putting my jump suit on. In fact I was shaking that much that I couldn’t even put the suit on myself, that’s how bad I was. I was terrified but I went through with it because the cause is such a good one,” Eileen explained. “If I can help even one soldier and his family and give them a bit of comfort then what I did was well worth it.
The most terrifying part of the jump is the dramatic freefall before the parachute kicks in before the more sedate part of the fall begins at 3,000 feet when the parachute deploys. From there Eileen relaxed for the remainder of the fall. Pictured with Eileen are members of the UMVC and WLHA along with a several club WW2 “Airborne” vehicles which were present in support of Eileen’s parachute jump.
Well done Eileen!