Skydive OAP loses battle with cancer

An Angus OAP who had planned a fundraising skydive has lost his battle with cancer before being able to fulfil his courageous dream.

Denis Mellor had been due to make the drop into the Perthshire skies on Sunday, but was sadly too ill to realise the ambition he had harboured since his National Service days in the RAF.

Staff at the Montrose Day Care Centre, which was to benefit from the 83-year-old’s bravery, have been devastated by the popular pensioner’s passing and facility manager Irene Mitchell has now pledged to face her fears and tackle the parachute jump in honour of Denis.

Earlier this month, Denis had finally been given the go-ahead to skydive having previously been banned from it by specialists because he was being treated with the drug Warfarin.

Sadly Denis’s condition worsened with the recent discovery of a melanoma on his eye but, when doctors took him off the drug, the Wirral-born octogenarian seized the chance to have the medical clearance certificate signed for the parachute challenge.

He had paid for the Errol Airfield jump out of his own pocket, determined to raise as much money as possible for the Montrose centre, which he said had supported him through difficult times.

Mrs Mitchell said Denis had been determined to go ahead with the event, but was too ill to travel and sadly passed away on Monday.

“Denis’s death has been a real shock to us,” she said. “He was a wonderful person and was gutted not to be able to go ahead with it, but it has to be done in his honour and I am going to take it on.

“We hope people will still support the cause that is now in his memory,” Mrs Mitchell added.