Stalwarts of Navy Rugby will this weekend attempt to scale the Three Peaks, inspired by a Royal Marine who lost a leg in Afghanistan.
Marine Aaron Moon played in the Navy’s U23 squad in the 2007-08 season and showed great promise as a fly half.
His career was cut short, however, when the Viking armoured vehicle he was in struck a roadside bomb in Helmand in 2008. He’d been in Afghanistan just one week.
The blast left the 25-year-old with critical injuries which ultimately led to him choosing to have his right leg amputated. It brought an end to his rugby and ultimately led him to leaving the Service.
Despite no longer being in the Corps, the Lancastrian remains an inspirational figure to the men and women he served alongside – and the rugby players he lined up with.
“Aaron’s required a series of operations yet continues to display the commando spirit to rebuild his life,” said Lt Cdr ‘Doc’ Cox, based at Northwood.
That commando spirit led Doc and other RNRU leading figures, players and supporters to attempt the highest mountains in England (Scafell Pike), Wales (Snowdon) and Scotland (Ben Nevis) in under 24 hours.
Are they daunted?
“24 hours of pain? Probably in the rain,” says Doc.
“Bring it on.”
The ten-strong team set out from the foot of Ben Nevis at 4pm on Saturday, concluding the climb the next day on Snowdon – where Aaron is due to join the fund-raisers at the summit on the latest stage of his rehabilitation; he’s currently recovering from his second operation and is without a prosthetic limb.
The team’s so far raised £7,500 – three quarters of the way towards the goal of £10K, which will be shared among the British Limbless Ex-Servicemen’s Association, Rugby for Heroes and the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity.
You can support their efforts at www.justgiving.com/RNRU-3-Peaks-Challenge/ and follow progress on Facebook – just search for RNRU 3 Peaks Challenge