Sky’s the limit for Sunderland fundraiser

Paul Bell  with instructor Mark Baker during the jump.
Paul Bell with instructor Mark Baker during the jump.
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The sky was the limit for a brave Wearside fundraiser who took part in his second skydive this year in memory of his dad.

Paul Bell, 30, took a 15,000ft dive with Peterlee Parachute Club at Shotton Air Field earlier this month, to raise funds for St Benedict’s Hospice.

The Sunderland-based hospice cared for his dad, ex-miner Bob Johnson, from Seaham, who died from cancer aged 53, when Paul was only 11.

Paul, a delivery driver, said: “My father used to be in St Benedict’s Hospice and they do really good work.

“My cousin and step grandmother also died of cancer, so I wanted to give something back.”

So far Paul, who lives in Grangetown, Sunderland, has raised £420 for the Ryhope-based hospice from his latest jump, beating his target of £400.

On July 15 this year, he did a 10,000ft tandem jump, from the same site, which raised £450.

Paul, who is dad to seven-year-old Angel, said: “The scariest bit is when you’re sitting on the edge of the plane. This time it was higher up and it was amazing.”

St Benedict’s Hospice has provided specialist palliative care to the people of Sunderland and surrounding districts since 1984 and its services have grown over the years.

It is now a centre of excellence providing a range of support across the whole community, through day services, out-patients, care in the home, hospital or care home, as well as in-patient beds.

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