A Banbury amputee and his partner are to make a 90-mile tandem recumbent bike ride to a friend’s memorial service to raise funds for charity.
Yanto Evans lost his lower right leg to a gunshot wound while working for a private security firm in Iraq in January this year. He will be joined by partner Karen Ward for the journey from Banbury Cross to Aldershot to attend the service for friend and fellow amputee Paul Burns, who died on June 7.
Mr Evans said: “After receiving the very sad news of Paul’s passing we wanted to show support to him, his family and the charities he believed in.”
The pair will leave Banbury on August 30 and aim to reach Aldershot Military Cemetery at 1pm the following day. A service will be held at the Northern Ireland memorial – unveiled by Mr Burns in 1992 – to jointly remember the 34th anniversary of the Warrenpoint attack.
Mr Burns, who served in the parachute regiment, lost his left leg after the IRA bomb attack and 30 years later also decided to have his right leg amputated due to ongoing pain.
Eighteen soldiers were killed in the attack, the British Army’s greatest single loss of life during the Troubles.
Mr Burns, of Farnborough, Hampshire, died unexpectedly while recovering from a charity cycling injury.
The 52-year-old had collided with a telegraph pole while taking part in the Three Counties Bike Ride with friends of the British Limbless Ex-Service Men’s Association (BLESMA).
Mr Evans said: “Paul was a very close friend. He will be missed for his work with amputees.”
It is hoped the bike ride will raise £5,000 for BLESMA, The Para Charity and The Pilgrim Bandits.
To make a donation visit www.justgiving.com/teams/PaulBurnsMemorial