A twenty-year-old nursery assistant from Powys is taking the leap in memory of her cousins Casey and Kelly Breese, and their dad Nick.

Ffion Jones, from Caersws, has already reached her £3,000 fundraising target but is now hoping to raise £5,000 for two charities close to her heart – the Wales Air Ambulance and Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, in Liverpool.

In 2011, twelve-year-old Casey Breese died when a goal post fell on top of him when he was playing with friends.

Just two years after Casey’s death, the family tragically lost his 18-year-old sister, Kelly, when the car she was driving crashed into a tree. Last year saw the family suffer more heartache following the sudden death of Casey and Kelly’s father, Nick.

From a young age, Ffion was keen to do a skydive but wanted to have a reason for it. She said: “The Wales Air Ambulance is a charity that has always been close to me and my family. My cousin was involved in a tragic accident where a goal post fell and crushed him underneath it. The Wales Air Ambulance was called out and they airlifted him to the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, but unfortunately he passed away shortly after arrival. I felt that it was important to give back and therefore I want to raise as much money for the Wales Air Ambulance as I can.” 

“This was unbearable news to hear for us all as a family, as well as their friends. They will all be extremely missed and forever in our hearts.” added Ffion.

Ffion is also raising funds for Alder Hey Children’s Hospital after the hospital saved her close friend Willow’s life.

Ffion added: “The skydive is in memory of my two gorgeous cousins, my uncle and also my close friend Willow. I will be doing a skydive to raise money for the Wales Air Ambulance as it is a charity close to my heart. I will also be raising money for the Alder Hey children’s hospital in Liverpool for saving Willow’s life.”

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, Ffion, who was due to do the skydive last year, has re-scheduled it to take place at Swansea Airport on Sunday, 8 August.

As well as donations from friends and family, Ffion has done quiz nights, as well as bag packing to raise funds.

Reflecting on jumping out of a plane, she said: “I am super excited about doing the skydive, and at the moment I’m not nervous. My family and friends think that I am absolutely crazy for doing it. One family member said ‘never in a million years’ would they do a skydive.”

Dougie Bancroft, Wales Air Ambulance community co-ordinator, said: “Ffion has already raised an incredible £3,000 in aid of two important causes. Despite the heartache the family has suffered, Ffion has taken it upon herself to jump out of a plane in memory of her cousins’ and uncle to raise money for charity. What a lovely tribute to remember her loved ones by. Thank you so much Ffion and good luck with the skydive.”

You can donate to Ffion’s fundraiser via her Just Giving page.

There are several ways that the public can continue to support the Wales Air Ambulance. These include online donations, signing up to the Charity’s Lifesaving Lottery or by coming up with their own innovative ways to fundraise at home. Further information can be found via www.walesairambulance.com

Alternatively, a £5 text-message donation can be made by texting the word HELI to 70711.