A SERVICEMAN from RAF Benson is to attempt a 170-mile charity cycle ride in a day in memory of a friend who died in a hiking accident.
Cpl Paul Bucknall will set off from the base at 4.30am tomorrow (Saturday) and cycle around the Chilterns before returning about 14 hours later.
The ride is in aid of the Patterdale Mountain Rescue team, which tried to save the life of senior aircraftman Robert Pascoe, 24, who was killed after falling from Helvellyn Striding Edge in the Lake District in October last year.
He had joined the Royal Air Force in 2006 as an aircraft maintenance technician and his final tour was working with the Merlin helicopters of 28 (Army Co-operation) Squadron at RAF Benson.
He had previously worked on Chinook helicopters at RAF Odiham and had deployed to Afghanistan to support the Chinook detachment. Cpl Bucknall, an experienced triathlete who competes for the RAF, said: “I had the great pleasure of working with Rob at RAF Benson, sharing cycle rides and also competing together in the odd triathlon event.