Sunday 21 December 2014

Leap of faith: Skydiving nun jumps 10,000ft out of plane for charity

Published 17/05/2013 | 13:23

Sister Patricia Wall  during her big leap with Dean Cocozza.
Sister Patricia Wall during her big leap with Dean Cocozza.

AN ELDERLY nun took a leap of faith today - jumping 10,000ft from an airplane.

Sr Patricia Wall (75) from Ballingarry, Thurles in Co Tipperary,  undertook the skydive to raise funds for Aware

And far from being put off by the adrenalin rush of falling two miles to the ground, she has vowed to do it all over again when she hits 90.

The Tipperary nun said she decided to undertake the leap to raising money for Aware and her local family resource centre. And she revealed that while her plans may have raised some eyebrows among her order and doctor, nobody tried to talk her out of it.

"The only thing I had to get was a doctor's cert but thank god I'm very healthy. My doctor kinda knows me so he didn't say too much now," she said.

Today was Sr Patricia's third attempt to undertake the jump but adverse weather ruled out the previous plans. But despite the delays she insisted she had no nerves on the day.

After landing, the energetic nun described the skydive as an "amazing" experience, adding: "I need time to recover from that. It was very good yes."

But she admitted there was no time for a quick prayer on the way down. "I was trying to follow all the instructions and enjoy it so it's done now," she said.

When asked if she felt close to God during her 10,000ft fall, she replied; "I didn't have time to think about God."

Sr Patricia was joined by a large group of friends and family who cheered her on throughout. However, offers of a large brandy after the jump had to be put on the back burner on the advice of the jump team.

"I'm not allowed brandy for another eight hours," she revealed.

The Tipperary nun, who has been a member of the Presentation Order since she was 17, undertook the jump to raise money for Aware, which assists people battled depression and local projects. She has raised over €25,000 to date and hopes to add to that amount in the coming weeks.

People can contribute to the fund via www.mycharity.ie/event/theflyingnun or through AIB Fethard, sort code 93-52-04, acc number 23184576.

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