Ben Wilson, a Royal Navy warfare specialist, set up a Go Fund Me page to raise funds for the Samaritans in the name of his former shipmate Daniel Johnson Harrison, who died on July 10 last year while serving onboard Portsmouth-based HMS Kent.
Ben’s fundraising page set a target of £1000 - but it has smashed the target already by raising £1500.
Ben became friends with Daniel while he was serving aboard the Royal Navy frigate.
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The 20-year-old said: ‘Myself and a few other shipmates are going to walk the West Highland Way over the course of five days followed by Ben Nevis on the final day. We are starting on July 25 in memory of a dear friend of ours Daniel Johnson Harrison.’
‘We are also raising money in support of Samaritans for it being such an important cause. The main focus of this fundraiser is to raise awareness of mental health issues for everyone – if they are young, old or even those you would never expect to struggle.
‘It’s crucial we all look out for one another especially in this day and age.’
Ben has walked the West Highland Way before and has scaled Ben Nevis twice.
He said: ‘I’ve done them separately, but I’ve never done them together, one after the other like this before. It’s an unbelievable amount we have raised so far for the charity chosen by Daniel’s family.’
In May 2019, Daniel received the HMS Collingwood Award during the Mayor Fareham’s awards do for his work volunteering at the Tudor Lodge care home.
Samaritans is a registered charity which provides support to anyone in emotional distress, struggling to cope, or at risk of suicide.
A Samaritans spokesperson said: ‘Samaritans' vision is that fewer people die by suicide. Every 90 minutes, someone in the UK or Ireland dies by suicide, and every six seconds, somebody contacts Samaritans for help.’
Anyone wishing to donate can visit the Go Fund Me page for more information.