Charity skydive’s a real family affair

Marcia and Danielle Shirley preparing for their skydive

Marcia and Danielle Shirley preparing for their skydive Buy this photo

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Abingdon and Wantage, South Oxford and Kennington. Call me on 01865 425431

MUM and daughter Marcia and Danielle Shirley have never jumped out of a plane before.

But tomorrow morning they will do just that, for a very special reason.

Ten years ago, Marcia’s dad – Danielle’s granddad, Frank Fuller – killed himself, aged 65.

He was diagnosed with depression in March 2004, and took his own life that April.

Now, mother and daughter want to raise awareness and money for mental health charity Mind to help end the stigma around mental health problems.

Mrs Shirley, 46, of Bradstocks Way, Abingdon, said: “Men don’t like going to the doctor anyway, he [Mr Fuller] definitely felt he was a burden on people.

“He wasn’t given as much help as he could have been, attitudes need to change.

“It has got better in recent years with adverts on TV, but there is still a long way to go.”

Miss Shirley, 26, who lives in Sutton Courtenay and has two boys of her own, remembered her granddad as a motorbike-riding “daredevil”.

She said: “He never acted like he was an OAP.

“He loved his motorbikes and his grandkids. He was a bit of a daredevil, but he loved his family and he was a lovely man.

“I wish my children could have met him because they would have loved him too.”

Oxford Mail:

Miss Shirley was just 16 when her granddad, above, a carpenter at Milton Hill House hotel near Didcot, died.

It was a couple of weeks before she sat her GCSE exams.

She said: “I had all that going on, and everybody feels like they could have done more. I didn’t know anything about mental health problems before that.

“If you don’t know anyone who has experienced it you can be quite ignorant, and assume people can snap out of it. We need to raise awareness and encourage people suffering from it to seek help.”

In the run-up to their big leap of faith, neither mum or daughter were looking forward to the plummet.

Miss Shirley will be taking a tandem jump with an instructor, but her mum is going solo.

It is not Mrs Shirley’s first fundraiser.

The year after her father died, she raised £1,000 for the Depression Alliance by riding around the M25 on a Vesper scooter for 12 hours.

Mother and daughter are hoping to raise £500 each doing the skydive.

They are also putting on a ska night at Abingdon’s Crown and Thistle hotel on Bridge Street tomorrow evening, featuring local lads Hope and Glory.

 

 

 

Our top stories:

Man in life-threatening condition in hospital after collision with car near Banbury

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

2:33pm Saturday 28th February 2015

A pedestrian is fighting for their life in hospital after being in a collision with a car near Banbury this morning.

Flowers planted at memorial garden to Jayden Parkinson in Didcot by family and friends

Oxford Mail:

1:29pm Saturday 28th February 2015

FAMILY and friends of a murdered teenager have planted flowers at her memorial garden today.

Defibrillator Campaign on target as 1,000 join up to be lifesavers

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

AS 1,000 lifesavers have now been trained across Oxfordshire, the campaign to install more than 300 defibrillators is set to hit its target next month.

Good Samaritan conned by Botley petrol fraudster

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Saturday 28th February 2015

A GOOD Samaritan who said she was conned out of £70 by a highway fraudster is warning others about being caught in his trap.

Self-build stardom beckons as Grand Designs presenter heads to Bicester

Oxford Mail: TV presenter Kevin McCloud.

8:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

BICESTER is set for television stardom as the man behind Channel 4’s Grand Designs heads is headed to Graven Hill.

The Witney man converting old boilers into corsets for Oxford Fashion Week

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

A HANDYMAN has spent the last three months fitting boilers not for the home, but for the catwalk.

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree