Facing her greatest fears in honour of Dad

Lauren and her dad on her wedding day

Lauren and her dad on her wedding day

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A Northchurch woman is facing her biggest fears to take part in a charity skydive on her father’s birthday.

Lauren Petchell’s dad, Mick Grimsdale, was diagnosed with a rare form of Motor Neurone Disease (MND ) called facial onset sensory and motor neuronopathy (FOSMN) in August 2015.

Mick, aged 57, grew up in Highfield and lived and worked in Hemel Hempstead all his life. He ran his own building company, Grimsdale Building Services, until two years ago, when he built his own home in Northchurch, but is now no longer able to work, due to his illness.

Lauren, aged 29, who grew up in Boxmoor and attended the Hemel Hempstead School, is terrified of both flying and heights. But on March 4, Lauren will be braving the skies to do a tandem skydive from 10,000ft, in aid of the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

Lauren said: “The reason I am doing this jump is to raise as much money and awareness for this amazing charity as possible which helps the suffers of MND and their families so much.

“My dad has already benefited from the support of their West Herts division, which will only increase as the disease progresses.”

And she added: “I admire the fact that, with everything my dad is going through, he still has a smile on his face and enjoys every day for what it is, which is such an inspiration to all of us. It can be hard for family members to watch your loved ones go through something like this, as you often feel helpless, so I wanted to do what I can to help.”

See Lauren’s fundraising page at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Lauren-Petchell1