Ben left the school about 6 years ago to go to Welbeck College and then on into the Army. Sadly, Ben took his own life two weeks ago. He had hidden his struggle with mental illness from everyone and it came as a great shock to all his family and friends. He was always an outgoing person and had a likeable cheekiness in his approach to life, so it is hard to believe that he has passed.
Following this tragic loss, Ben’s family and friends have joined together to honour his life and raise awareness about the issues surrounding mental health, neuro-diversity and the prevention of young suicide.
Ben was a big part of Typhoon Squadron in the Army and one exercise he was extremely fond of and could not wait to see come to fruition was ‘Trans-Europe’, a summer long exercise covering the majority of Europe in four stages. Starting in Loughborough, the Squadron planned to travel all the way to Istanbul and back again; however, due to the Coronavirus pandemic the exercise could not go ahead. Typhoon Squadron have now decided the best way to honour Ben is to complete the journey he had originally planned and have set up a team challenge to run the 4600 miles to Istanbul and back.
You can follow the progress of the “race” to Istanbul and back at the Challenge website.
As a school, led by the PE department we are also going to try and complete the challenge in memory of Ben but to also do our bit to raise awareness of this ever-important cause. We are looking for members of the school community to join the ‘Crypt Runners’ who will try and complete the 4600 miles to Istanbul and back. If you are keen to get involved please email Mr Bawden direct and you will be added to the team and given access to the website that has been set up by Typhoon Squadron to follow each teams progress of the challenge.
The challenge is not a competition and you can walk or run any distance you like in one go. All mileage will contribute to our grand total. However, there is a bigger message than completing the challenge. We are trying to raise awareness and money for charities to ensure that young suicide does not continue to be the biggest killer of young men in the UK. The primary charity we are raising money for is Papyrus who are the national charity for the prevention of young suicide. If you would like to donate to this cause, please follow the link below.
Amazingly, Ben’s family and friends have already raised an incredible £9000. Please get in touch with Mr Bawden if you would like to contribute to the physical challenge or simply donate via the just giving page if you would just like to support this worthy cause.
Regards,Mr Ashley Bawden
Director of Sport
Ben spent time working with Punchline Gloucester who have included more about Ben and the challenge.
Gloucestershire Live have also published information.