Sky’s the limit for fundraising family of disabled Kiera

A FAMILY from West Hampstead are becoming daredevils to raise money for a muscular dystrophy charity and to help their 12-year-old daughter who is a sufferer

Marc Mullen

A FAMILY from West Hampstead are becoming daredevils to raise money for a muscular dystrophy charity and to help their 12-year-old daughter who is a sufferer.

The Santry family from Sherriff Road in West Hampstead are taking to the skies near Seville in Spain for a 15,000ft skydive next month.

None of the participants have done it before and they will be raising money for the Muscular Dystrophy Campaign and 12-year-old daughter Kiera who is a severe sufferer of the disease.


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Kiera's father Robert Santry, who will celebrate his 30th birthday on the trip, said: "We are taking Kiera to a health retreat in the mountains half an hour from Malaga, where she can receive treatment on a daily basis.

"Friends and family are coming out to celebrate my birthday and we will do the jump. My wife is doing it and it will not be easy for her as she is not 100 per cent healthy - she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis four years ago. Everyone is quite scared."

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The skydive will be everyone's first jump. Last year six of the 17 people taking part abseiled off Guys Hospital tower to raise money for the charity.

The height of the leap is the highest they could do and involves a one-minute freefall, although they will be jumping in tandem.

Mr Santry said: "Everyone is quite scared. There will be no training until the day. I think everyone will be screaming as they are freefalling."

Kiera, who goes to LSU School in Highgate, was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy three years ago.

At the time she was extremely active, excelling in football, running, swimming and tennis.

Mr Santry said: "We are doing this mainly to raise money for Kiera, to buy the special equipment she needs.

"Her decline has been quite rapid. She cannot walk long distances at all now, but three years ago she was first in her school run.

"This is very upsetting for Kiera and for those who love and care for her so deeply. It has been with the love and support of friends and family that have helped not only Kiera, but the whole family to get through the last two years.

"But the worst is to come and we all know that. These things help us deal with it."

So far the family has raised more than £7,000 for the Muscular Dystro-phy Campaign, and a quarter of the money raised will go on the skydive.

Kiera is a big Chelsea fan, and she will feature in the match day programme for the Blues crunch match with Manchester United a week on Saturday.

More than 60,000 people in the UK suffer from the disease, which can be acquired or inherited.

The charity spends £3million each year on research, muscle centres and the much-needed support for carers of sufferers.

Anyone who wishes to sponsor the skydive, should call Peter Crampton on 020-7803 4823 or email

p.crampton@muscular-dystrophy.org

marc.mullen@hamhigh.co.uk

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