Former SAS Soldier Colin MacLachlan to deliver keynote speech at David Seath Memorial Fund Golf Day

Colin McClachlanIt was an honour and privilege to meet Colin Maclachlan today whom, I am delighted to announce, has very kindly accepted our invitation to deliver a guest speech for our Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Dolf Day, which will take place at Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club on Friday 11 September 2020. 

Learn more about our golf day #fundraising #eventhttps://bit.ly/2FW4xyI

Colin is a former SAS soldier with over 25 years of security and risk related experience, best known for appearing in Channel 4’s SAS: Who Dares Wins and Channel 5’s Secrets of the SAS. Colin was involved in some of the most high profile and daring SAS missions in recent time. Only a handful of men have been involved in hostage negotiations, hostage rescue and been a hostage themselves and Colin is one of them.

On one mission, Colin waded through swamps in Sierra Leone to hunt down the ‘West Side Boys‘, a guerrilla gang holding 11 British soldiers hostage. It was a mission so dangerous they nicknamed it ‘Operation Certain Death’ – it’s real name was Operation Barras. The SAS teams secured the hostages’ building and neutralised any West Side Boys.

Maclachlan was also the first sniper on the scene when a hijacked flight with 180 passengers landed at Stansted. Sparking a four-day stand-off, it was the longest standing hostage siege on UK soil to date. Four years later, Colin found himself on the other side of a rescue mission after he was taken hostage in Basra. Blindfolded, battered and stripped naked, he had a gun pressed to his head and the trigger pulled, as his captors held mock executions. Colin only survived long enough for British troops to rescue him because the terrorists wanted to film his suffering in a propaganda video before they executed him.

Colin left the SAS shortly after completing an exchange programme with Delta Force and Seal Team 6, and has since provided security consultancy for the Saudi Royal Family, Celebrities and US Media Networks.

Colin is also a published author, ambassador and public speaker who founded the charity ‘Who Dares Cares’ which works with people, from all walks of life, living with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome.

Thank you for your support!

As the #TenYearChallenge gathers momentum, your incredible support has ensured we continue to support those who returned from Afghanistan with life-changing physical and psychological wounds throughout this year. We extend our sincere gratitude to all the #inspirational individuals, #community groups and businesses who have generously supported David’s #legacy, which has surpassed £300,000 and used to support over eight hundred personnel, #veterans and their families across #Scotland, through #helpforheroes Fellowship Programme.

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Captain David Seath Memorial Fund beneficiary selected for Invictus Games 2020 UK Team

Julian AllenWe are delighted to have received word from one of The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund #beneficiaries, Julian Allen, who has informed us that he has been selected to represent the United Kingdom at The Invictus Games Foundation 2020 #event in the Netherlands.

The Invictus Games is an international adaptive multi-sport event, created by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, in which wounded, injured or sick armed services personnel and their associated #veteranscompete in a series of adaptive sports. Over five hundred competitors, from nineteen nations, will compete in city of the Hague and we look forward to sharing news, concerning Julian’s experience.

Julian served in the 2nd Battalion Light Infantry, and injured his back in Germany which, at the time, appeared innocuous. However, following several tours in Northern Ireland the problem escalated in terms of severity. Having left the Army, Julian underwent surgery in June 2016 and a specialist bed was purchased to assist in his recovery through the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund.

The benefits of quality rest and recuperation were felt almost immediately as Julian progressed from a wheelchair to walking with a stick a short time after surgery. Four years on, Julian is preparing to compete in the Invictus Games, an incredible story of resilience and determination.

Help us ensure our work continues by donating in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund by clicking this link: https://bit.ly/2tFR3oD

A bridge Too Far; or is it!?

Roch Rochester received a welfare grant in David’s name, through Help for Heroes, as a means to purchase a specialist hand mountain bike in 2017. Since then, Roch has fully grasped the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors with his family and utilise cycling as a means of therapy. As it turns out, Roch has recently taken on a momentous endurance challenge with his mountain hand bike and covered over 200 miles, from Koblenz to Arnhem, earlier this year.

Roch has described his experience below;

“The road to recovery takes some twists and turns. The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund financed a mountain hand bike as a means to enjoy some time with my children out on the trails of Dartmoor. This was my goal and the joy that has provided is immeasurable. Well, not in the wealth most things in life are measured but, in my case, it is wealth in family time.

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“So, to the bridge too far… I put my name down for a cycle challenge with BLESMA. Having a spinal cord injury, I am in fact a member of this charity. The challenge was to ride down the Rhine from Koblenz to Arnhem in Holland. I say a ride down the Rhine… there where a lot of up hills also. Well, it’s only 200 miles and the opportunity to get to Arnhem for the 75th anniversary of operation market garden.  Being an ex 7 Para Royal Horse Artillery man, I would get to see some of my other brothers from other mothers. My pre-training consisted of more time on penicillin than on the bike.  This due to the metal in my legs which causes bouts of cellulitis. So, the training went well but I was determined to get there.

“So, we started the morning of the 15th September with the target to reach the bridge too far in Arnhem on Friday 20th September. We had a mixed group of injuries ranging from spinal cord injuries single, double and triple amputees. This was a fine site for the locals to try and take in. Riding down the cycle ways of Germany with all the Brexit wrestling happening and us going past flaying the union flag and our own corps flags.

“But anyway, what a challenge, not just physically but mentally for myself. Koln was the halfway point this was one of the hardest days for me where I tend to lose the feeling in the hands complete. I tend to overwork the shoulders so, I was contemplating duct taping the hands to the hand grips. We had to ride the streets of Dusseldorf and Duisburg if you haven’t been there. We shall we say being so low down to the floor I think I developed tram tourette’s.

“Yes, lots of Blesma tops worn as this charity organised and financed the trip. But without the funding from David’s memorial fund it would have taken years of building myself back up to the point I am at now and, without the help from many of the military charities, this would have been a bridge too far.   

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“So, keep up your fantastic work I am always deeply in debt to you all. Every day David is in my thoughts as get on my bike and my horizon expands.”

Trish Patterson to take on world renowned endurance race in support of David’s legacy

We are delighted to announce that Trish Patterson will take on the MONTANE®Spine® Race in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund, a challenge which will involve covering an epic 268 miles across the most demanding national trails in Britain, over seven days.
The MONTANE®Spine® Race The MONTANE®Spine® Race is widely regarded as one of the world’s toughest endurance races. A truly epic challenge that will test your physical resilience and mental fortitude. Racing non-stop along the most iconic trail in the UK, you will experience the full intensity and ferocity of the British Winter.

The Pennine Way is one of the most demanding National Trails in Britain, and certainly the most iconic. The trail crosses some of the most beautiful and at times difficult terrain found in England, including; the Peak District, Yorkshire Dales, Northumberland National Park, Hadrian’s Wall and the Cheviots; finishing at the Scottish Borders.

The Spine® Race is open to anyone with appropriate experience* who wishes to test themselves and compete in a truly demanding race. Expect to face extreme weather, deep snow, ice, mud, bogs, ground water, storm force winds and driving rain in a gruelling, non-stop, 7-day race from Edale to Kirk Yetholm.

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It’s not just the conditions that are against you, your own body and mind could become your worst enemy. Tiredness, fatigue, sleep deprivation and exposure to the extremes of winter weather are all to be expected. To finish you must be prepared and willing to push yourself harder than ever before.

Trish has kindly taken time out of her training schedule to share her thoughts with regards to taking on the Spine Race:

“Dave and I met in the Army and were deployed to both Kenya and Afghanistan together.

“One of my best memories of Dave is when we had a big BBQ at my house. Everyone bought some beers and burgers in a ratio of 90% beer and 10% burger with the odd sausage. Not Dave though, Dave arrived at my house with some of the finest ingredients and declared he was making home made burgers! Needless to say they were amazing and soon disappeared.

“Dave didn’t do things in half measure, he was committed, hardworking but also very funny. He had that knack of making tough things feel easier to those around him with either a smile or a few words. His enthusiasm and laughter was infectious. Dave was one of the most genuine people I have ever met.
“Dave was very tough both physically and mentally, I don’t doubt he would have liked the challenge of the Spine Race which is widely regarded as one of the world’s toughest endurance races. Racing 268 miles with over 13000 meters of ascent non-stop in the ferocity of the British Winter unsupported would have been right up his street!
“To complete the Spine Race I will have to be tough, both physically and mentally. Training for an event like this requires a lot of time and sacrifice (I’ve lost many toenails!) but it is needed. My training plan will have me running 100 miles a week at my peak, and there will be limited partying for me at Xmas.
“People often see the distance as the toughest aspect of the race, but I think the darkness is the toughest. During the race it will be dark for about 16hrs a day and it is likely that I will be alone, fatigued and cold. Maintaining mental focus will be tough when every part of your body wants you to stop and sleep, but I will try my best to ride out the tough times like Dave, with a smile.”
We offer our sincere thanks to Trish for supporting the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund and wish her the best of luck for January. If you would like to donate in support of Trish’s epic effort, you can donate, via Just Giving.

Yellow Cafe to run red velvet cake promotion during Remembrance Week

We are delighted to announce that Yellow Cafe Rosyth will run a Red Velvet Cake #fundraising promotion in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund from 06 November – 20 November.

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The cafe is run by Ewen and Maighan Brand who generously offered to donate the proceeds from cake sales during their first month of operating in May 2016 and have continued to run a series of promotions and collections ever since.

Ewen also very kindly ran the Mens’ Health 10K Edinburgh event in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund back in October 2018, raising over £250 in support of David’s legacy.

Based in Rosyth, Yellow Cafe is a highly popular family-friendly cafe which believes strongly in an ethos of making fresh food with a smile. The cafe offers an extensive array of daily savoury and sweet treats and runs a highly successful outside catering service.

Address: 10 Unwin Ave, Rosyth, Dunfermline KY11 2ZQ

Our sincere thanks to Ewen and Maighan for their generous, continued support.

LEGACY OF SCOTS ARMY CAPTAIN CONTINUES TO HELP FORCES VETERANS

PRESS RELEASE  

 The legacy of a Scots army captain who died while raising funds for Help for Heroes has been commemorated by the charity.

2.jpegSince Captain David Seath, from Crossgates, Fife, collapsed just three miles short of the finish line running the 2016 London Marathon and died later in hospital, his family have gone on to raise over £300,000 for the charity.

And this week, Help for Heroes marked Captain Seath’s incredible legacy by installing a memorial stone and planting a crab apple tree in the grounds of its Northern Recovery Centre, Phoenix House, at Catterick Garrison in North Yorkshire, with his parents Libby and Peter and brother Gary as guests of honour.

An officer in 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, David had chosen to support Help for Heroes through his participation in the London Marathon as he cared passionately about veteran welfare.

Mark Elliott, founder of Help for Heroes, said: “For David to die the way he did, doing what he did, speaks volumes about the man he was – doing something to help others. Help for Heroes is very much about family. We lost a member of our wider family when David died but we gained three more in Libby, Pete and Gary, and it’s been a huge honour to do so.

“I could talk about David for a long time but I would like to talk about these three extraordinary people who, out of incredible adversity – losing a son, a brother – have gone on to do what they have done… raising money, planting a tree to keep David’s name alive and through all that, everyday helping others. So, I would like to pay tribute to them and say thank you. David would have been extremely proud, as are we, of everything you have achieved.”

3.jpegGerry McGregor, who runs Help for Heroes’ fellowship network in Scotland, said: “It is amazing what you have done as a family to carry on David’s legacy. I am so lucky as I get to see the difference it makes to veterans’ lives every single day – we could not do what we do without you, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart on behalf of all the veterans we support in Scotland.”

David’s mother Libby told guests at the ceremony how her son had expressed his desire to work with veterans after he left the army and how she felt he would be pleased that he was now helping them, through the memorial fund set up in his name. Mrs Seath plans to return to Phoenix House and teach veterans how to make jelly using the apples from the tree as part of their recovery. 

Gary Seath, who founded the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund in his brother’s memory, said: “The funds raised in David’s name will be used to support Scottish veterans in their recovery, including taking part in wide range of sporting, creative and vocational courses as well as receive mental health support and general respite from the day-to-day chaos of life. 

“Help for Heroes staff are also on the ground establishing a programme of regular social, sporting and learning activities in across Scotland as a means to build communities of solidarity and support. Most importantly, whether at Phoenix House or by attending events within their local community, members are accessing a holistic recovery programme which focuses on peer-on-peer support; reinforcing the charity’s ethos that those who serve together deserve to recover together.

4.jpeg“It is a wonderful, fitting tribute that personnel, veterans and their families will now have an opportunity to stop and reflect at David’s memorial stone at Phoenix House. I hope David’s legacy and Commando ethos serves to encourage and inspire recovery through sport, creativity and education, within the walls of what is a very special place, reinforced by a special bond of camaraderie and solidarity.”

The granite plaque was donated by Fife stonemasons WL Watsons & Sons of St Andrews. The company have made two other commemorative plaques, installed at David’s former base RM Condor, Arbroath and at the Commando Memorial at Spean Bridge.

More information on the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund at https://captainseathmemorialfund.blog/

Attend Help for Heroes’ Creative Force Scotland Exhibition Launch Event

The captaindavidseathmemorialfund raises money as a means to support over eight hundred personnel, veterans and their families across Scotland, through helpforheroes’ Fellowship Programme. One way in which funds have been used is to run regular arttherapy workshops and the artwork, pottery, poetry and photography produced will showcase at Edinburgh Napier University’s historic Craiglockhart Campus, from 19-22 November 2019.

Book tickets for the launch event on the evening of Tuesday 19 November: https://bit.ly/2Ow41NA

Creative Force - Donations to Reception Poster (1)Help for Heores’ Creative Force Scotland Exhibition will showcase how the artists have used creativity to explore and express their emotions as part of their ongoing recovery from physical and psychological injuries. This #event provides a wonderful opportunity to view the art and engage with the artists at the site where World War One Officers, including Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon, were also encouraged to explore creativity as a means to alleviate the symptoms of Neurasthenia (shell shock) at Craiglockhart Military Hospital.

Supporters of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund are warmly invited to attend the reception evening, which will be held at Edinburgh Napier University’s historic Craiglockhart Campus on the evening of Tuesday 19 November 2019 (please click this link to attend the event).

This event provides a wonderful opportunity to view the art and engage with the artists at the site where World War One Officers, including Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon, were also encouraged to explore creativity as a means to alleviate the symptoms of Neurasthenia (shell shock) at Craiglockhart Military Hospital.

18:30 – Arrival and canapés
19:00 – Welcome
19:15 – Short performance by Stand Easy Productions
19:30-20:30 – View the exhibition and meet the artists.

Calling all quizzy rascals! Put the January blues to one side and book your team for our Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Pub Quiz!!

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Calling all quizzy rascals! Put the January blues to one side and book your team for our Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Pub Quiz!

Friday 31 January 2020

Garvock House Hotel, Dunfermline, KY12 7TU

Book Tickets: https://bit.ly/31OAqCL

Assemble your team of six colleagues, friends or family for eight rounds of mind-teasing questions on sports, film, television and general knowledge as wel as our famous picture rounds. We will also provide a wonderful haggis supper as well as sweet and savoury snacks.

The funds raised will ensure our work will continue through the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund which supports over 800 personnel, veterans and their families across Scotland, through Help for Heroes Fellowship Programme.

What do you need to do!? Simply book six tickets and we will keep you updated as we move closer towards the event in January. For further information, please contact gary.seath@outlook.com.

Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Golf Day raises £2500 in support of veterans and their families in Scotland

We are delighted to announce that our Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Golf Day has raised over £2500, which will be used to support over 800 personnel, veterans and their families in communities across Scotland, through Help for Heroes Fellowship Programme.

The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Golf Day warmly welcomed eighteen teams of golfers, who competed in a team stableford competition on the renowned Championship Course at Dalmahoy Hotel and Country Club, which has hosted both the Seniors Open and Solheim Cup.

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Inspired by the thought of walking in the footsteps of golfing legends, including Seve Ballesteros, Nick Faldo and Sam Torrance, our teams gallantly took on the long and daunting fairways which rewarded both the cautious and bold within the party.

Despite the challenging breeze, there were a number of impressive performances on the day and our great friends from Yellow Cafe proved victorious, who scored an incredible 95 stableford points.

“We have thoroughly enjoyed supporting the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Golf Day; it’s been a great day out at a fantastic venue but, most importantly, it’s fantastic to know what an amazing impact the fundraising has made in supporting veterans.”

Most importantly, the funds raised will ensure David’s legacy continues, through the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund; a legacy which has now raised over £298,000.

Funds have previously been used to support 148 beneficiaries through Help for Heroes’ Quick Reaction Fund (QRF) as a means to support structured recovery pathways concerning life-changing physical and psychological wounds.

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Funds are now used to support over 800 personnel, veterans and their families in communities across Scotland, through Help for Heroes Fellowship Programme, as a means to build networks of support and solidarity at a local level.

Help for Heroes Fellowship Programme enables wounded, injured and sick personnel and veterans, as well as their families, to access life-long support through regular social, sporting, creative and educational activities across Scotland.

The Fellowship Programme also provides support concerning mental heath, employment, welfare and financial matters as well as opportunities to visit Phoenix House, Help for Heroes’ Recovery Centre, which is located in North Yorkshire.

Gary Seath said:

“Today has proven another wonderful day in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund and our sincere thanks to all who attended our golf day at Dalmahoy Hotel and Country Club.

“What’s very special about our golf day is that it welcomes golfers of all ages and abilities and, although there it is a tournament, everyone who attends is, first and foremost there to support David’s legacy.

“All funds raised, through the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund, are now used to support Help for Heroes Fellowship Programme in Scotland and it’s very important to communicate the positive impact our fundraising makes at a local level.

This was something which resonated considerably on the day and attendees left Dalmahoy with a real spring in their step confident in the knowledge how greatly appreciative we are of the support as well as the positive impact David’s legacy has and continues to make supporting personal, veterans and their families.”

Help for Heroes elite athlete, Invictus Games medallist and BBC sports presenter, JJ Chalmers, recorded a special message of thanks to supporters of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Golf Day.

As a Help for Heroes elite athlete and Invictus Games medallist, former Marine, JJ Chalmers has rebuilt his life following life-changing physical wounds suffered as a result of an IED Blast in Afghanistan.

JJ is also a member of Help for Heroes’ Fellowship Programme, who kindly recorded this message of thanks.

For further information about next year’s golf day event, please contact gary.seath@outlook.com