A disabled Royal Navy veteran from south Suffolk has gained a new lease of life after receiving a mobility scooter from a British military charity.
Scott Stafford, 27, of Long Melford, served in the Royal Navy for five years until he experienced a severe back injury during a training exercise, leaving him unable to walk long distances and in need of constant pain relief.
Mr Stafford said that, after being medically discharged from the Navy, he had been frustrated while waiting for medical clearance to work, without the ability to venture outside independently, but he had never considered using a mobility scooter.
However, this changed after his health visitor applied to the SSAFA, the Armed Forces Charity, for funding, and he was then donated a scooter from Sudbury-based TGA Mobility Ltd.
“Not been able to walk is a pain, especially when you have been an active guy like me,” said Mr Stafford, who has pain management injections in his spine regularly and will be operated on soon.
“I always imagined scooters to be slow and boring and really embarrassing to drive.
“I am so pleased my health visitor introduced me to the idea and I cannot thank SSAFA enough for finding the funding.
“Having continual back pain is tough but going out and exploring the countryside takes your mind off it.
“It is invaluable to me, you just don’t realise how essential a machine like this is until you are in the same situation.”
An SSAFA spokesperson added: “We are delighted to be able to find the funding for Scott and help transform his life. Our network of volunteers work tirelessly to provide support for all members of the military family.”