War veterans sail to Jersey

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Onboard Tenacious are servicemen and women from the British Limbless Ex Servicemen Association, including single and double amputees, those who have lost their sight and others who have mobility problems.

They were also accompanied by their families and carers.

While in the Island on Monday the group were hosted by the Lieutenant-Governor, Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Dalton, at Government House.

Sir Stephen said it was important that the Island continued to help injured servicemen and women.

‘Jersey believes very strongly in supporting the British Armed Forces and always welcomes visiting units and personnel,’ he said.

‘We are very conscious that military duty demands commitment and sacrifice and that some military personnel suffer as a consequence of their service.

‘That is why we, here in Jersey, look forward to hosting members of Blesma as they take part in this Jubilee Sailing Trust voyage and do our best to say thank you for that service.’

Among those who visited Jersey was Staff Sergeant Andrew Mudd, whose life changed forever outside his home in Colchester on a Saturday morning in November 1989.

After getting into his car with his wife to go shopping, he reversed out onto the road before a bomb, planted in his car by the IRA, detonated.

Sgt Mudd, who was in the Royal Military Police for 22 years, lost his right leg through to the hip and lost his left leg above the knee. He also suffered severe damage to one of his hands, but continued serving in the army after recovering. His wife suffered superficial injuries.

Also serving as crew aboard the sailing vessel is Major Philip Bailey, who at the age of 67 contracted a flesh-eating disease in his legs and had to have both of them amputated.

And Major Ali Grant, who served in the Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps, is also on the boat. She became paraplegic after being involved in a traffic collision in 2005.

Barry Le Grys, chief executive at Blesma, said: ‘This sail is going to be challenging for the Blesma crew, but it offers the opportunity for these injured veterans to have an adventure with their families – something they have not done since injury. The positive impact will be greatly significant.’

Tenacious set sail on Tuesday morning bound for St Malo and was due to return to the UK later this week.

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