Veteran’s charity gets its just desserts
An Aberystwyth restaurant donated all ice cream proceeds on the final day of half term to Blind Veterans UK, after a retired Capel Bangor captain completed a three-year charity challenge.
Captain Colin Jones, from Capel Bangor, of Blind Veterans UK, has spent the past three years taking on fundraising challenges for the charity, which supports blind and visually impaired veterans of the armed forces and national service who have lost his sight, and managed to raise £5,248.
Today, the owner of PD’s Diner Dai Day has decided to donate all proceeds from the Sunday 31 October ice cream sale to Blind Veterans.
Colin praised the ‘very kind gesture’ and said PD staff ‘battled through’ a ‘very wet and very windy Halloween Sunday’ and managed to raise £230 for Blind Veterans UK.
Colin said Dai had supported him throughout his three-year charity challenge: “To complete the challenge, I cycled from Dover to Llandudno Blind Veterans Centre, revisiting all my military postings in England and in Wales, then I did a 47- blindfolded. mile walk from the Blind Veteran UK Center in Llandudno to Hightown Barracks Wrexham.
“Dai Day has always been very supportive and he has always championed the cause. He approached me to ask if I could ask the blind veterans.
“The most important thing for me is that it’s a nice symbolic gesture, they should be rewarded for going the extra mile. It’s a great charity, they do a lot for veterans who have lost their sight. C It’s a great way for PD to end the trading season.
Colin has taken on many challenges over the past three years including but not limited to riding Pen-Y-Fan and Yr Wyddfa blindfolded and playing a charity football match between Aberystwyth Old Boys and The Royal Welsh Veterans. On Friday September 3, Colin and his team arrived at Wrexham to end the three-year challenge, known as the Captain Stephen Healey Memorial Challenge.
Captain Healey was killed in Afghanistan on May 26, 2012, when his vehicle was hit by an improvised explosive device (IED).
Colin said that although he didn’t know Captain Healey, he was approached by other members of his regiment about the challenge: “I didn’t know Stephen personally, but I’ve taken on many collection challenges funds over the years.
“A few of the guys in my regiment knew I was fundraising, so they approached me and I agreed to take on a challenge in memory of Stephen.”
Of all the challenges, Colin said the ‘toughest’ challenge was the blindfolded walk from Llandudno to Wrexham: ‘It was a complete shock to the system as it involved being driven 47 miles with a blindfold. Because you are guided, you can only take small steps. In all my years in the military, I never had blisters, but that day, I did.