‘We’re doing this for Chris’

Almost a year to the day since AFC Sudbury volunteer Chris Olley died, members of his family are preparing for a skydive in his memory.

The 52-year-old, from Bank Side in Long Melford, lost his battle with motor neurone disease on December 10 after falling ill with pneumonia.

Twelve months on, Mr Olley’s son-in-law John Hague and his daughter’s partner Leon Bond, will leap head-first out of a plane to raise vital funds for the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

“Chris was an incredible bloke and this is our way of trying to give a little bit back,” said Mr Hague, who lives in Carsons Drive, Great Cornard, with his wife Megan.

“I have been with Megan for five years and, during that time, I got to know Chris pretty well. He was not your normal father-in-law and he became one of my best friends.”

Mr Olley was diagnosed with motor neurone disease – a rare condition that causes the progressive weakness of the muscles in the body – in 2006.

Despite the disorder limiting him to an electric wheelchair for much of his latter life, he continued to work as a volunteer at AFC Sudbury and regularly attended matches.

“I know how much Chris thought of the charity and how much it helped him, and that is why we are doing this,” said 29-year-old Mr Hague, a builder.

“I have done a bungee jump before and that was terrifying. Everyone is being very supportive and I will find out soon if this is even scarier.”

Since Mr Olley’s death, his family has raised more than £10,000 in his memory.

“This is the last family event we plan to do for a while,” said Megan.

“We appreciate that we have already asked so much of people and been supported so well, and we don’t want to take advantage of that.”

To support Mr Hague and Mr Bond on their skydive at Beccles Airfield on December 8, go to www.justgiving.com/John-Hague.