Holy Shit... I am 30!!!
Shit the bed…. I made it to 30!
How i have no idea, but Operation 30 was a success. When i was 21 and charging hard and being loose in all sense of the word, i came up with a thing called Operation 30, the main aim… to make it to 30! well here i am… 😳 time to get a bus pass or something! 😂
I am pretty stoked on the chaotic life i have led thus far. It started in Slough with being dragged up on a council estate but the journey really began at 9 when my real mother dumped me with some black bin bags and sent me on my way (and that's the nice version 😂); i moved in with Jackie who i now class as my mother and my Dad and i spent my childhood growing up in Deal & Dover, England. Like today i spent my school days being the uncool kid (why change a habit of a lifetime haha). but when i wasn't at school, Skateboarding and playing Rugby was my thing and i wasn't half bad at either sport.
When i was 16 i joined the Army, spent a year at the Army Foundation College and then went on to passing P-Company and gaining admission to the best regiment in the British Army - The Parachute Regiment. In 2005 i made my first Parachute jumps at RAF Brize Norton and shortly after I was sent to 3 Para in Colchester and spent the next year gaining all my driving licences including all my truck licences and the rest of the time on exercise getting ready for “something big” in Salisbury Plain, Oman and subsequently being deployed to Afghanistan in 2006. That tour led to some crazy memories with the blokes i was with. The tour gave way to some courageous stories and especially 2 stories from 2 different friends Bryan Budd who later was awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions and Mark Wright who later was awarded the George Cross and what happened on that day with his team has now been made into a film called Kilo Two Bravo (Kajaki) and is really good and worth a watch if you haven't seen it yet. There were many other stories and many other brave men on that tour and i am honoured to have served next to those men of 3 Para when I was a mere crow & FNG (fucking new guy)
Nearer to the end of the 2006 tour I took a transfer to 1 Para Special Forces Support Group, initially i was part of the counter terrorism platoon and then after a year or so we got deployed to Iraq and that tour was the best tour i did in the Army for many reasons but mainly because of the men who i went there with, to this day are still some of my closest friends. Once returning to the UK i joined the Signals Platoon and deployed to Afghanistan again on this tour we lost one of the best soldiers and good friend Tommy Brown and I still miss talking to this lunatic. After the tour i returned to the UK and decided my 8 years in the Army was enough so i decided that i needed a new challenge so in 2011 i left the Army to try and be a professional jumper… oh dear god this was a challenge!
After leaving the Army i joined MAST as a maritime security consultant around the gulf of Aden and Indian ocean, this was a well paid job which gave me lots of downtime to follow my dream of BASE jumping, during this time I travelled all over the word BASE Jumping and skydiving with friends. In this time i won various UK national championship medals with my team PH36 with Mark Skarratts and Pete Lindstrand we represented Great Britain at the 2012 World Championships and I won the Extreme BASE Jump world Championships in Spain. I finished working in this sector when I got detained in India and was threatened to be thrown in jail, I was lucky and got released (that's another story!)
My ego got the better of me in 2013 thinking I was indestructible and thinking I could land a parachute anywhere... wow how I was mistaken! I broke pretty much every bone on the right side of my body in a remote place in Turkey. This is the worse thing that had happened to my Jumping career but also the best; it has made me a more humble and appreciative jumper and if you ever see me on an exit scared or nervous - this is the reason why 😉. This accident also led me to form some amazing friendships and strengthen others.
I recovered within 6 months, made a documentary about the recovery process which was fun called Back to BASEics. I went on to stunt double Sullivan Stapleton in the HBO series Strike Back with Gary Connery & work with the BBC & Channel 4.
But in 2015 things went for a turn for the worse and I was super depressed, I tried to take the weak way out and tried to take an overdose and like most things in my life so far, I failed!!! 😂 but everything happens for a reason. I've had to rebuild my life, get rid of the negative people and the haters and focus on what makes me happy.
I've carried on wingsuiting as this is truly my main passion in life and I'm always learning and trying to progress slowly... I want to be that old man still flying telling the youngsters about all the antics we used to get up to. I've jumped off an array of iconic landmarks including flying past Christ the Redeemer, jumping off Twickenham stadium & the London eye and did a roof top bar jump; all were epic and I do not regret anything!
I have also found Freemasonary which is now a big part in my life which offers structure and a sense of community and is fun, I'm actually really proud to be a Freemason even if people think what we do is odd! #RealMenWearAprons
Finally the one thing I never thought would happen would be me getting married but... 2 months ago I married my best friend and well the rest is history!
I have made my fair share of fuck ups in my life thus far, and I'm sure I will make many many more. I'm sorry if I've pissed you off but if I've not pissed you off yet; wait patiently I will get to you 😜
Joking aside, thank you everyone who has been part of this journey. Thanks for all the birthday wishes - I've still got no idea where I'm going but I am on my way....
Here's to another 30 years of madness 🍻
"It's about the journey not the destination"
"A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step"
I am a journeyman, a Paratrooper & I fucking love life!