Staincliffe pensioner to leap out of plane from 15,000 feet to mark 74th birthday

DARING DUO Malcolm and Sandi will take the plunge next month.
DARING DUO Malcolm and Sandi will take the plunge next month.

Jumping out of a plane at 15,000 feet isn’t the first image that comes to mind when you think of a 73-year-old.

But Malcolm Cooper is no ordinary grandfather. He’ll be 74 next month and to celebrate he plans to throw himself out a plane and free-fall for 26 seconds – all for a good cause.

He’ll be joined by Sandi Parker, who works at Woodland Court in Staincliffe, where Malcolm cares for his wife Hilary.

Though separated by almost 50 years, Sandi and Malcolm are united in their aim of raising as much cash as possible for Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice doing the skydive on June 28.

Retired lorry driver Malcolm raised £1,200 for the hospice when he did his first skydive aged 72 in 2012.

“It was one of the best things I’ve ever done,” said Malcolm. “The first thing I thought was ‘I have to get back up there and do it again.’

The hospice provides palliative care for children with serious and terminal conditions throughout West Yorkshire.

Malcolm added: “When I see what the money is going on and what some of them have to cope with, it doesn’t seem a big effort to jump out of a plane.”

Sandi, of Dewsbury Moor, was inspired to join him after watching his first skydive video and hearing about the hospice’s good work. The 26-year-old said: “Malcolm can’t wait for it but I’m a bag of nerves!”

Forget Me Not’s head of community fundraising Jason Costello said: “ Malcolm is a real life action man, and an inspiring character who shows that you’re never too old to set yourself a challenge.”