A CHARITY dinner dance is being in Leek Wootton held later this month to support four ex-soldiers attempting to row the Atlantic in memory of Claverdon paratrooper Conrad Lewis who was killed in Afghanistan.
The fund-raiser on Saturday January 26 takes place at The Warwickshire Golf and Country Club, which is one of the sponsors of the expedition.
Among the rowers setting out in December will be former Leamington dentist Roy Dixon, who was a pupil at Warwick School before he joined the Army. After leaving he ran his own dental practice in Leamington.
Roy said: “We are all four of the same age and served for 20 years or more – which is why we’re doing this to raise money for the 353 charity – named after paratrooper Conrad Lewis who was the 353rd soldier to be killed in Afghanistan, aged 24 – and the Royal British Legion. We will also be raising money for cancer charity Myeloma UK, as one of our lads has it.
“It’s going to be a tough challenge; more people have been into space and climbed Everest than have rowed across the Atlantic. It’s a real test when faced with blisters, salt rash, sharks and sleep deprivation – two hours on, two hours off for between 45 and 55 days. We will be rowing 3,000 miles and facing 50-foot waves, as well as storms and adverse winds.
“We want to give something back and inspire others to achieve the seemingly impossible. We are touring schools with a very simple message: No matter what the circumstances, dare to dream, step beyond the constraints you believe hold you back and you can achieve amazing things.”
Guest speaker at the dinner dance, which will include and auction and raffle, will be Steve Sparkes, a blind ex-Royal Marine who rowed the Pacific Ocean last summer.
Tickets cost £45 and can be booked by visiting www.atlanticmavericks.com or calling Roy on 07595 465286.