Selby Post 11 Oct 12

Article from the Selby Post, 11 October 2012.

Red Arrows help with ‘500’ push

Sean with Red Arrows engineers at Scampton. (11-10-55 SU)

Sean with Red Arrows engineers at Scampton. (11-10-55 SU)

A disabled former soldier has passed the halfway mark on his epic 500-mile charity ‘push’ – and has been helped on his way by the famous Red Arrows.

Sean Allerton, an ex-RAF man from Sherburn, began the Push 500 charity challenge five months ago and has now covered over 250 miles in his wheelchair.

Last Thursday the 46-year-old travelled to RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire where Red Arrow Mike Child did a few miles with him on the airfield’s taxiway.

And on Monday Sean travelled to RAF Benson in Oxfordsire, where Sir Stephen Dalton, the RAF’s Chief of Air Staff , accompanied him on a two-mile course to take Sean well into the second half of his mammoth pursuit.

Sean said: “It was great to meet ‘Red 9′ Mike Child and to do a couple of miles with chief of air staff Sir Stephen Dalton. I had two brilliant days at the RAF bases and I can’t thank them enough for helping me reach my goal.”

During his day at Scampton, Sean was shown around one of the Red Arrows’ famous Hawk planes and met some of the representatives from the charities for whom he is trying to raise money.

Among them are the RAF Benevolent Fund, RAFA, the RAF Charitable Trust, Aerobility, Flying Scholarships for the Disabled and The Forgotten Heroes.

Sean began the Push 500 challenge in May when it was launched at RAF Church Fenton with the help of famous singing twins Craig and Charlie Reid, otherwise known as The Proclaimers, whose song ‘I Would Walk 500 Miles’ was the inspiration for Sean’s epic quest.

Since then he has been going to the airfield once a week to do several laps at a time in his wheelchair.

Sean was paralysed in a road accident while serving with 34 Squadron RAF Regiment in Cyprus in 1993. The accident left him a tetraplegic.

To sponsor the challenge, go to www.push500.com.

Note: The image states ‘Red Arrows engineers’, but those in flying suits in the image are Officer Cadets from the Yorkshire Universities Air Squadron at RAF Church Fenton.