A team of 13 serving military wounded, injured and sick (WIS) personnel and veterans succeeded in summiting Mera Peak in the Himalayas on Remembrance Sunday, marking the centenary of the end of the First World War and honouring all those who served, sacrificed and changed our world.
The team is made up of serving WIS and veterans, who have all received support from the Legion’s Battle Back Centre, a leading centre for the recovery and physical and mental wellbeing of both serving WIS and veterans.
Chris Joynson, Operations Manager at the Battle Back Centre, and Expedition Leader for The Royal British Legion said: “The summiting of Mera Peak is the culmination of 18 months planning between the Royal British Legion and Leeds Beckett University. That it occurred on Remembrance Sunday could not have been more significant.”
Army veteran Lyndon Chatting-Walters was injured Afghanistan in 2008, and suffered severe spinal injuries, breaking his back in four places, and was later medically discharged.
Ten years on, he is one of the team members on Mission Himalaya. He said: “Today has been the summit of not only Mera Peak but many months of hard training and organisation.
"It has been a difficult but humbling two weeks of trekking and acclimatising, and with the support and friendships made within the team it all became possible.
"It was a truly incredible experience to honour the centenary of the First World War standing on top of a hard earned mountain with fellow veterans.”
Dave Bunting, Outdoor Development Manager for Carnegie Great Outdoors, is the Expedition Leader. He said: “The last 48 hours has been a mixture of intense stress and one of the most rewarding projects I have ever done in the mountains.
“Aiming to get a group of serving and veteran soldiers, who are also novice mountaineers, on top of a Himalayan Peak on the Centenary of the end of WW1 brought with it a variety of challenges, but witnessing it first hand in this inspirational environment made it all worthwhile.
“The ascent was very challenging physically and mentally but to watch this newly developed team of people overcome the challenges together and support each other in the most extreme and alien of situations was simply superb and will stick with me forever.”