An office manager from Blackpool will conquer his fear of heights while doing a charity sky dive in honour of his sister.
Martyn McKechnie, who works as the registration authority manager for Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, will leap out of a plane next month to support his sister Afton who has Type 1 diabetes.
I have seen the fantastic work going on at the Trust and I have watched my sister growing up with the condition
The 30-year-old said: “I have a double reason for wanting to do the sky dive in aid of diabetes. I’m doing it from both a personal and a professional perspective as I know just how much diabetes costs the NHS every year.
“I have seen the fantastic work that is going on at the Trust and I have watched my sister growing up with the condition.”
The family was shocked to discover Afton had Type 1 diabetes when she was diagnosed aged 10. Scientists know Type 1 diabetes is not related to lifestyle, but they are yet to identify the root cause.
Martyn said he had always wanted to do the sky dive in aid of Diabetes UK.
He will jump out of a plane on June 13 at the Black Knights Parachute Centre near Cockerham village.
Gary Doherty, chief executive of the Trust, has sponsored Martyn and congratulated him for doing something positive about diabetes.
Martyn’s work at the Trust involves managing the Registration Authority team who are responsible for the issuance and governance of NHS Smartcards that can be used for a multitude of local and national applications.
To sponsor Martyn go to www.justgiving.com/Martyn-McKechnie.
‘Treatment is a lot better now but there is a lot we do not know’
Mr McKechnie said: “My sister Afton was just 10 years old when she was first diagnosed and it was very worrying for the whole family.
“Some mornings we’d get up and take a blood reading and think she could have been in a coma. The treatment is a lot better now, but there is still a lot we don’t know about Type 1 diabetes and what causes it.
“Afton is 25 years old now and she is living a very ‘normal’ lifestyle thanks to the support she has received over the years from clinicians, family and friends, but we are always on the lookout for developments and potential cures.” Martyn added: “I have no doubt whatsoever that a cure will eventually be found.
“The only question is to whether it takes 10 years or 100 years, but every additional donation brings a cure that little bit closer to reality.”