Marines to take on 125 mile paddle

MISSION Captain Jon White, left, and Colour Sgt Lee Waters
MISSION Captain Jon White, left, and Colour Sgt Lee Waters
The Russian destroyer Vice Admiral Kulakov as seen from HMS Somerset in the Moray Firth

Royal Navy ship shadows a Russian destroyer

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A ROYAL Marine from Portsmouth who was injured in Afghanistan will paddle 125 miles in 30 hours as part of the Devizes to Westminster International Canoe Marathon.

Colour Sergeant Lee John Waters, 37, will team up with Captain Jon White, who was also injured in Afghanistan, to support the work of SSAFA Forces Help and the Royal Marines Association.

Jon, from 40 Commando, is a triple amputee after he was injured by an IED blast in Sangin, Afghanistan in June 2010. The explosion resulted in the loss of both of his legs and his right arm at the elbow.

Marathon partner Lee was Jon’s troop sergeant before he was shot three times while on tour – in his jaw, in the left hand, and his left foot.

Jon, from Devon, and Lee, from Portsmouth, will be the only injured serviceman participating in the marathon, when it takes place over Easter weekend. The pair will have to complete the course non-stop through the night as they encounter 77 locks and weirs.

Jon and Lee’s families stayed at SSAFA’s Norton Homes in Birmingham and Ashtead in Surrey, while they received treatment at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre at Headley Court.

Lee said: ‘The staff at Norton House do wonders to comfort the countless forces families that have had the misfortune to experience such turbulent times. I’m looking forward to doing the race with all of our unique challenges.’

To donate go to justgiving.com/jon-Bex-DW-SSAFFA