Brave mum completes fundraising skydive to help disabled son
A SKYDIVING mum and generous Mail readers have helped buy new play equipment for a disabled boy.
Lisa Bird, who is mum to five-year-old Ethan, completed the skydive on Sunday.
Together with anonymous cash donations left at the Mail for her son, Lisa and her fellow jumpers – boyfriend Stephen Cooper and friend Rich White – raised about £2,300 for Ethan.
Lisa, who lives with her son in east Hull, said: "On the Saturday night it really hit me what we were doing.
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"It was a bit scary when we were waiting to do it in the plane but as soon as I'd landed I wanted to do it again.
"I got to the ground and saw Ethan and he was shouting 'Mummy I love you'.
"Apparently, he'd been a bit worried when I left him and was wondering where I'd gone but he was so pleased when he saw me land."
Ethan has spinal muscular atrophy, which was diagnosed just two weeks before his second birthday.
His condition means he uses a powered wheelchair to get around and is fed through a tube.
The Bellfield Primary School pupil's link between his brain and muscles is impaired, which means his nerves do not work and "excite" when he wants to move his limbs.
This causes them to wither, due to inactivity.
The condition means Ethan spends most of his time playing on his Wii or cheering on his favourite sports team, Hull City AFC.
But his dream of being able to play outside could be a reality by the weekend.
Lisa, 23, said: "I wanted to get some decking and a specially adapted see-saw and swing so Ethan could play outside and enjoy the sunshine.
"With the money given by the Mail readers and the skydive fundraising, we should have enough for everything.
"The equipment has been ordered, so I really hope we can get it sorted so it is up to use in time for the weekend."
Lisa, who was cheered on by supporters Jase Pearce, Dawn Carney and best friend Laura Dallee, says the new play equipment will give Ethan a new lease of life.
She said: "I never expected to raise this much money in such a short space of time.
"When we first started I thought I'd be writing to charities, applying for grants and it would be ages before we could get him the equipment.
"At the moment Ethan can't get out in the garden on his chair so when it is sunny he can't be out enjoying it.
"As soon as the equipment is up I bet he will be outside all the time."
Lisa says she could not have met her fundraising target so quickly without the anonymous strangers who donated.
Donations included £500 in cash left at the Mail offices by and anonymous donor and another £500 donor who sponsored Lisa on her fundraising webpage.
She said: "I want to give a massive thank you to everyone who has sponsored and donated.
"I can't emphasis enough how much this means to us, and to Ethan. I've told him the play equipment has been ordered and he can't wait."