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8th Dec, 2021

Redditch teenager jumps to it to thank the hospital that saved his life

Ross Crawford 16th Jun, 2018

A REDDITCH teenager is to say thank you to the hospital that saved his life – by doing a sponsored parachute jump on his 16th birthday.

Heart patient Bailey Pearce hopes to raise £400 for Birmingham Children’s Hospital where he had lifesaving surgery when he was just two weeks old.

He’s since been back there for four more major operations and is likely to face even more in the future.

“If it wasn’t for the brilliant doctors, nurses and staff at the Children’s Birmingham Hospital I would not be here now,” he said.

“They have not only helped me and my family but have saved countless lives over the years.

“I would just love to show them how grateful I am and give a little something back to help them carry on their fantastic work.”

The Trinity High School student, who suffers from a rare heart condition, was inspired to take the leap by his mum Mandy.

“I did one nine years ago on his behalf for the Children’s Hospital, and he came to watch and ever since then he’s always wanted to do one,” she said.

“When I did mine I was absolutely terrified, but it is such a buzz.

“Bailey’s really chilled about it and I know he’s going to love it – I’m so proud of him.”

However the youngster isn’t allowed to jump until he is at least 16, on August 10, and that’s the day he will be taking to the air.

“At the moment he still needs to be monitored and he’s waiting for the all clear from the doctors so he can do the jump,” said Mandy, a teaching assistant from Lakeside.

“We’re all just keeping our fingers crossed that he gets the all clear.”

Meanwhile the youngster has been busy planning his future with the aim of doing media studies so he can become a sports journalist.

It’s all a far cry from 15 years ago when, just seven days old, a visiting midwife noticed his fingernails and lips were tinged blue.

He was taken to the Alex and from there straight to the Children’s Hospital.

“His main coronary artery hadn’t developed properly. He had his first operation when he was two weeks old and he will need surgery for the rest of his life.

“But it doesn’t stop him and to look at him you wouldn’t think he has this condition,” said Mandy, whose daughter, Casey, aged 11, will also be there cheering Bailey on.

The family have a Just Giving page – visit the website online and search for Mandy Pearce or just click here

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