Pete Alexander completes six endurance races in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund

Pete Alexander served with David in Afghanistan and the Middle East with 19th Regiment Royal Artillery, whom we first met when he joined us in London to complete the 3.2 miles David tragically could not finish.

As a fully qualified Tandem Skydiving Instructor, Pete organised a skydiving fundraising event which raised over £5000 in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund in August 2018.

Since then Pete, who is currently posted in the Middle East, has embarked on a series of endurance races in support of David’s legacy which has included the Amman, Tel Aviv and Wadi Rum Full Moon Desert marathons as well as the Dead to Red Relay Race (275KM) and the Red Sea Half-Marathon.

Most poignantly, Pete was determined to run the London Marathon and we are delighted to announce that he successfully completed this year’s race in an incredible time of three hours and fifty-six minutes.

Pete has very kindly shared his experiences through the following piece:

Two Years on and Still Inspiring

“Dare I say it, one of the most annoying things about Dave is his natural ability to push those around him to take an extra step towards bettering themselves without even realising we’re being pushed.  The recognition of this trait in him defines him as a natural leader; one who we would all rally around without the need for him to jump and down in frustration.  I fell into his trap of bettering myself last year when I was unable to take part in the Virgin London Marathon 2017 due to a posting to the Middle East.  An easy combination of him wanting all his friends and family to take that extra step or go that extra mile in life mixed with the sense of brotherhood towards him and his passion for supporting those who went before him led me to postponing my place in London to 2018, but also adding another 5 events to the list.

London

“It all started with the Amman Marathon in Jordan on October 15th 2017.  In temperatures hitting 29oC, it wasn’t exactly a graceful performance. The premature closure of water aid stations didn’t help and indeed added to frustrations but the determination to finish wasn’t lost.  Severe cramps set in to both calf muscles as I sweated out my body weight in salt. I eventually crawled across the line in an inspiringly disappointing time of 5hrs 22mins. 

“Run Jordan, who had organised the Amman Marathon also hosted the follow on event in Aqaba; The Red Sea Half Marathon held on 7th December 2017.  Being later in the year, it was slightly cooler but being a 4hr drive South, the temperature was still in the 20’s, despite being an early morning race.  Being back at sea level as opposed to the 900m above sea level experienced in Amman was a huge help as the finish line was crossed in 1hr 37mins. Somewhat better than October’s efforts!

“The next event was the first of what I knew were going to be two beasts in the six I had planned; The Dead to Red Relay Race.  Teams consisting of up to 10 people faced the 275km journey from Wadi Mujib at the Dead Sea to the beaches of the Red Sea.  The race commenced at 1600hrs on 8th March 2018 with teams running throughout the night on little to no sleep with the winning team crossing in a time of 13hrs.  14th place out of 28 teams was not an undignified result with a finishing time of 16hrs 32 mins.  A further 16hrs and 32mins was then very quickly pushed out by the entire team but in more of a horizontal position before fellow team members returned to the UK and Abu Dhabi!

Wadi Rum Start.jpg

“It was then back to the marathon distance for the final three events with the next event in Tel Aviv.  The city hosted a fantastic event with a wonderful course, which took in the entire length of the Tel Aviv coastline and through the historic city of Jaffa.  I’m not entirely sure that the stretch through the fish market helped but thankfully those smells were short lived.  As mentioned, Dave’s natural ability to drive us reflected in the way I conducted my training to better myself and I got a new personal best (PB) when I crossed the line in 4hrs 08mins (my original PB was 4hrs 31mins in London 2011); no onset of cramps this time! It still wasn’t good enough though.

“This was it; London. I’d missed out the previous year and it was what this journey for me was all about.  Dave’s inspiration and pushing continued.  I was back in the UK on home soil and I wanted to better my time and I wanted sub 4hrs.  Record temperatures were set to hamper the London Marathon and they didn’t let us down either, hitting the highest ever recorded at 24.1oC. I was comfortable with this. I’d been training and racing in hotter temperatures but complacency wasn’t something I wanted to get on the wrong side of.  We shuffled to the start line and then we were off.  Sadly people were collapsing due to exhaustion with the heat but I wasn’t prepared to let it happen to me.  I wasn’t going to let Dave down.  This had to be done for him and in the best time for me.  The last 3 miles were always going to be hard both physically and emotionally but I crossed in 3hrs 56mins.  It was done. I had my new sub 4hr PB which I wanted so badly, but without losing sight of why I had done it; something that will never be lost.  

“I wasn’t allowed to stop there though.  I still had the sixth event (and second of the two beasts) to complete; the Wadi Rum Full Moon Desert Marathon.  It was just 5 days later. It was also at night. And on sand.  I knew Dave would be settling into his ringside seat with a big bucket of popcorn for this one! In 2014 I had been in Jordan with Dave as his Gunnery Instructor as he took part in Op Cougar.  His jaw had hit the floor with the beauty of the country as did mine and Friday 27th April didn’t let me down as I found myself under the full moon in the desert with 16 other plucky (or stupid) individuals with the towering landscape all around us that had once provided so much solace for TE Lawrence.  I was already tired before I’d even started and within the first six miles, I knew the rest was going to hurt as my legs started letting me know. Again, not a graceful performance but I had already come to terms with my main effort being just to complete it which I did in 6hrs 20mins.  Having achieved a sub 4hr marathon just 5 days before, I wasn’t going to beat myself up! 

“As I sat down at the end of the race (marking the end of the six events I’d promised I’d do) with a bottle of water in one hand and a beer in the other, I looked up to the sky and thanked Dave.  I thanked him for lighting the way with a full moon, thanked him for the spectacular thunderstorm that he’d sent to keep me on my toes, thanked him for being a friend and thanked him for being an inspiration and keeping me going throughout the last 5 months.  He’ll never stop being either a friend or an inspiration and even though I want a break, I’ll keep training and competing.  I guess it’s not a bad thing that he’s so annoying after all.”

We offer our sincere thanks to Pete for his monumental efforts and continued support of David’s legacy and you can donate through his just-giving page

Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Beneficiary’s Photography Business celebrates first anniversary

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We are delighted to announce that Captain David Seath Memorial Fund beneficiary, Steve Mills, recently competed his first year of business as a professional photographer.

A welfare grant from the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund was awarded to Steve, through Help for Heroes, as a means to purchase specialist photography equipment and enrol on courses to support the development of his business aspirations.

One year on Steve’s business, OneShot Photography, continues to grow from strength-to-strength which specialises in bespoke photography, both in the studio and on location. Steve has also founded Recovery Through the Lens which promotes photography as a positive medium for veterans living with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Steve said:

“My first year has been very steady. I have been building up my portfolio and working on myself, to ensure I can manage my mental health in order to cope with any stresses that I may experience on the journey. I have been working on a Community Interest Company (CIC) which I have now registered at Companies House. It is called ‘Recovery Through the Lens’ and the aim is to help other Veterans through the medium of photography. I also have my first exhibition coming up, 4th – 18th June, at the local library, its only a small step, but things seem to be moving in the right direction. This has all been made possible by the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund.”

Community completes 5K run/walk to commemorate the life of Captain David Seath

IMGP2755Over two hundred runners, walkers and dog-joggers completed the 5K circuit around Pittencrieff Park to commemorate the life of Captain Seath, who tragically died running the 2016 London Marathon, on Sunday 22 April 2018. 

The event was supported by the Lord Provost of Fife, Jim Leishman who acted as official starter for the event which raised an incredible £1400 in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund.

Gary Seath said:

“We wish to thank the local and wider community who supported the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund 5K run/walk event on Sunday 22 April 2018. It is very difficult to express in words how it feels to look around Pittencrieff Park and witness so many from the local community with you to commemorate David’s life. The warmth and generosity of our supporters is incredible, a real ‘esprit de corps’ as David would have phrased it, which contributed to a poignant sense of commemoration and legacy.”

The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund has raised £276,000 and provided over two-hundred and fifty welfare grants to personnel and veterans of the British Armed Forces living with life-changing physical injuries and psychological trauma through Help for Heroes, the charity David was running for that tragic day.

David’s memorial fund is making a huge and lasting difference to its beneficiaries. Every donation made in his memory is used to support Help for Heroes’ Quick Reaction Fund (QRF) which provides specialist sports equipment, respite breaks and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) therapy, as well as facilitating supported employment placements, training courses and the setting up of small businesses.

Memorial stone in memory of Captain Seath laid at Commando Monument

We experienced a very poignant, memorable day at the Spean Bridge Commando Monument on Tuesday 24 April 2018, where a memorial stone dedicated to David’s memory was officially laid in the Garden of Remembrance.

The Commando Monument was built to commemorate members of the Commando Regiment who died during the Second World War, and is located six miles from Achnacary Castle where the Commando Basic Training Centre was established in 1942.

During World War Two, candidates arrived at Spean Bridge railway station, and their first assessment was to march the seven miles to Achnacarry Castle, past the site on which the monument now stands. 

The candidates who completed the intensive training formed an elite commando fighting force which conducted a series important raids throughout the war, such as St Nazaire, as well as land on Sword Beach as part of the landings in Normandy.

World War Two claimed the lives of 1,700 Commando personnel and a total of eight Victoria Crosses were awarded to members of the regiment. 

An area of remembrance has been established a short walk from the monument and is the location where the ashes of many of the commandos, who served during World War Two, have been placed and memorials have been laid commemorating the lives of Commandos who have died in recent conflicts. 

Gary Seath said:

“It was an honour to witness the unveiling of a memorial stone, dedicated to David’s memory, at the site of such historical significance for the Commando Regiment. As an Officer of 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, David was incredibly proud to have completed the All Arms Commando Course and earn his coveted Green Beret, which has been worn so proudly since the first generation of Commandos who trained in the Spean Bridge region during World War Two. I wish to offer my sincere thanks to Ian Bertrand (29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery) as well as Carlos Hamlet and Matt Burton (105 Regiment Royal Artillery) for making this wonderful memorial project happen.”

Ian Betrand, a close friend of David as well as a member of 29 Commando Regiment RA, has led this particular memorial project with regards to the acquisition of the Aberdeen Granite, sourcing a stone mason and composing the statement of memorial. 

Ian provided a wonderful short speech prior the unveiling of the memorial stone and we were all greatly touched by his sentiments as well as humour with regards to how he ‘acquired’ the Aberdeen Granite.

Ian was joined by two of David’s close friends Matt Burton and Carlos Hamlet, both of whom have served in 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery and provided fantastic insight with regards to the formation of the Commando Regiment.

We wish to offer our sincere thanks to Ian Bertrand (29 Commandon Regiment RA) as well as Matt Burton/Carlos Hamlet (105 RA) for their dedication and commitment to making this very special act of remembrance possible.

Captain David Seath 5K Memorial Run/Walk Event Schedule

We look forward to welcoming you to our Captain David Seath Memorial Fund 5K Run/Walk event on Sunday 22 April 2018.

Timings:

  • 1000hrs-1040hrs: Registration (Marquee adjacent the Glen Pavillion)
  • 1045hrs: Welcome 
  • 10:55hrs: Warm-up
  • 1100hrs: Run commences
  • 1110hrs: Walk commences

Route:

Screen Shot 2018-04-20 at 13.58.08We shall run the normal Dunfermline Park Run route (Green marker denotes the start and red is the finish):

  • Head down the straight towards the Glen Pavilion.
  • Continue down the hill for three anti-clockwise loops.
  • Head back up the straight to the finish.

 

Further Information:

  • Free car parking is accessible from the A907 to the main car park
  • Limited car parking by the Glen Pavilion is also available
  • Toilets will be open from 9:30am.
  • Water & fresh fruit stands provided.
  • Further refreshments will be available in the Glen Pavilion.
  • 1145 Air Cadets Squadron will act as Course Marshals.
  • First aid provision is in place.

Yellow Cafe extend fundraising partnership with Captain David Seath Memorial Fund

Yellow Cafe

We are delighted to announce that Yellow Cafe will extend its fundraising partnership with the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund which has, so far, raised over £2000 in support of David’s legacy.

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 has exciting plans to develop an outside catering service later this year.

This year, Yellow Cafe will continue run a collection in store and will run a special cake promotion in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund in November, during the period of Remembrance.

Gary Seath said:

“We were overwhelmed by the incredible gesture made by Ewen and Maighan when they donated their cake sale proceeds to the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund and, since then, we are delighted to have established a strong fundraising partnership with Yellow Cafe.

“We are sincerely grateful to both Ewen and Maighan for their continued support I am delighted with regards to the success they have achieved, which is testament to their dedication and commitment as well as the support of the local community and beyond.”

The Captain David Seath Memorial fund has now provided over two-hundred and fifty welfare grants to personnel and veterans living with life-changing physical injuries and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) through Help for Heroes.

David’s memorial fund is making a huge and lasting difference to its beneficiaries. Every donation made in his memory is used to support Help for Heroes’ Quick Reaction Fund (QRF) which provides specialist sports equipment, respite breaks and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) therapy, as well as facilitating supported employment placements, training courses and the setting up of small businesses.

If you own a local business and would like further information with regards to setting up a fundraising partnership in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund, please contact Gary Seath (gary.seath@outlook.com)

Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Welfare Grant supports Kevin’s Recovery Pathway

Chamomile plant in herb gardenThe Captain David Seath Memorial Fund provided a welfare grant to Kevin, through Help for Heroes, as a means to participate in the Mayfield Nursery Horticultural Project as part of his recovery pathway for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Mayfield Nursery Horticultural Project provides a place for people with mental health problems and learning disabilities to attend the nursery and develop skills and confidence to gain employment, volunteer, or make positive steps towards improving their mental health.

Kevin said:

“I would like to thank the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund for their kindness and help in support of my recovery pathway. Sometimes my illness holds me back, but now I have something to look forward to as it gets me out of my home which, at times, feels like a prison.

“I’m so proud that David’s legacy has helped my recovery. Some people class me as a hero but David and his family are the real heroes. Thank you for everything, it means a lot to me that I might be able to start living again.”

The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund has raised £276,000 and provided over two-hundred and fifty welfare grants to personnel and veterans of the British Armed Forces living with life-changing physical injuries and psychological trauma through Help for Heroes, the charity David was running for that tragic day.

David’s memorial fund is making a huge and lasting difference to its beneficiaries. Every donation made in his memory is used to support Help for Heroes’ Quick Reaction Fund (QRF) which provides specialist sports equipment, respite breaks and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) therapy, as well as facilitating supported employment placements, training courses and the setting up of small businesses.

That’s why we decided to work with David’s chosen charity, Help for Heroes, and specifically to support their welfare grants programme. By doing so, we can be confident that every single donation to the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund really does help to rebuild lives.

 

Captain David Seath Memorial Fund forges link with Heroes Drinks Company

FullSizeRender 2It was an honour and privilege to meet Chris Gillan, from Heroes Drinks Company, recently at the Royal Scots Club.

We are delighted to announce that we shall work in partnership with Heroes Drinks Company, who will generously support our Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Golf Day, Pub Quiz and Burns Supper events as official drinks partner.

As the founder of Heroes Drinks Company, Chris’ story is nothing short of inspirational, whose personal story runs parallel with many of the beneficiaries the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund support through Help for Heroes.

Chris experienced a life-changing injury in Afghanistan whilst serving alongside the SAS, which would later end his career in the Armed Forces. His transition to civilian life presented many challenges and, as result of his injuries sustained, experienced a prolonged period of unemployment and was later left homeless.

Determined to support fellow veterans living through similar experiences as himself, Chris established the Heroes Drinks Company, a social enterprise dedicated to employing injured veterans and supporting veterans’ charities in Edinburgh.

The company was established in 2011 and currently produces its own high-quality brand of vodka and gin, which will be generously donated as prizes for our Captain David Seath Memorial Fund events.

We are delighted that Chris will also attend many of our events as a guest speaker as a means to share his inspirational story to our supporters.

We offer our sincere thanks to Chris and the team at Heroes Drinks Company for their generous support.

Join us for the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund Golf Day at Fairmont St Andrew’s in August 2018

St Andrews is synonymous with both the development of the game and the British Open, which has produced many wonderful memories as well as worthy champions over the years.

We warmly welcome golfers of all ages and abilities to join us at the Fairmont, St Andrews on Friday 24 August 2018 for a team stableford competition on the stunning, award-wimming Torrance course. Bookings can be made individually or as pairs, triples and foursomes, so why not get a team together of friends, family or work colleagues for a wonderful day out in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund.

Our package includes:

  • Breakfast & Pro Clinic
  • Fifty free range balls
  • Team stableford
  • Five Competition holes
  • Two-course dinner
  • Prize ceremony hosted by David Tanner

Tickets can be booked through Eventbrite, invoice or via credit/debit card; Please contact gary.seath@outlook.com

About The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund

The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund was established in memory of Captain David Seath who tragically died running the 2016 London Marathon. David’s fund provides welfare grants to personnel and veterans of the British Armed Forces living with life-changing physical injuries and psychological trauma through Help for Heroes, the charity David was running for that tragic day.

David’s fund is making a huge and lasting difference to its beneficiaries. Every donation made in his memory is used to support Help for Heroes’ Quick Reaction Fund (QRF) which provides specialist sports equipment, respite breaks and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) therapy, as well as facilitating supported employment placements, training courses and the setting up of small businesses.

Please note: We operate a thirty day refund policy for this event.

Team Napier to take on EMF Marathon Relay in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund

FullSizeRenderWe are delighted to announce that a team of colleagues from Edinburgh Napier University will take on the Edinburgh Marathon Festival Team Relay in support of The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund.

The team, who work together in Development and External Relations Department of the University, have generously nominated David’s fund as a result of working alongside Captain Seath’s brother, Gary, who is also part of the relay team.

Gary will be joined by Ben Waite, Alan Bree and Craig Shearer who, collectively, will cover 26.2 miles which starts at Potterrow and takes in a host of iconic Edinburgh landmarks before finishing in Musselburgh.

Ben, Alan and Craig take part in regular park run events at Cramond and Vogrie, and it was on the starting line of one particular race that discussions turned to taking on marathons in support of good causes, who said:

“Taking part regularly in park run events has provided a great opportunity to get to know one another and we had talked about the possibility of progressing to longer endurance races. Working alongside Gary, we are aware of the memorial fund he has set up in memory of his brother as well as Edinburgh Napier University’s strong link with the Armed Forces, therefore, it made perfect sense to nominate the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund.”

Gary established the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund following the tragic death of his brother David, a Captain in 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, who was running the 2016 London Marathon.

The Captain David Seath Memorial Fund has, so far, raised £276,000 and provided over two-hundred and forty welfare grants to personnel and veterans of the British Armed Forces living with life-changing physical injuries and psychological trauma through Help for Heroes, the charity David was running for that tragic day.

David’s memorial fund is making a huge and lasting difference to its beneficiaries. Every donation made in his memory is used to support Help for Heroes’ Quick Reaction Fund (QRF) which provides specialist sports equipment, respite breaks and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) therapy, as well as facilitating supported employment placements, training courses and the setting up of small businesses.

Gary said:

“I have been overwhelmed by the kindness many of my colleagues have expressed since I joined Edinburgh Napier University, who have generously donated money and taken on challenge events in support of the Captain David Seath Memorial Fund. I’m very much looking forward to taking on the relay with the guys, who have made a wonderful gesture in support of my brother’s legacy.”

You can support the guy’s incredible efforts through Just Giving: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/edinburghnapieruniversity-marathonrelay2018