For most people, the idea of spending six days on a rowing machine would not be an appealing one, but that is precisely what Luke Ebsworth will be doing as he attempts to cover the length of the River Thames over the next week.
Even Luke admits that this is not his natural environment. “I’m not much of a gym enthusiast”, he says, but his desire to give back to the Navy’s charity means that is raising money by rowing 343km between Saturday 12th and Thursday 17th February. Luke is a father of four boys and currently serves as a Chief Petty Officer Weapons Engineer in the Royal Navy. “I've been in the Royal Navy for just over 20 years now and during that time have benefited from the Royal Navy Royal Marine Charity in numerous ways over the years and also tried to support them where I can.”
Part of Luke’s decision to fundraise for the RNRMC came after the Charity recently provided a grant to his son’s primary school in Plymouth to fund a new outdoor play area, benefiting the many Royal Navy children who attend the school.
However, Luke was also motivated to raise funds for the RNRMC due to his personal circumstances. Unfortunately, Luke is being medically discharged from service as a result of an ongoing injury, sustained several years ago whilst representing the Royal Navy at rugby. The intensity of working under difficult conditions at sea agitated his knee to the point where staying in the service was no longer viable. Luke was transferred to NSRC Hasler, which receives grant funding from the RNRMC, and benefited from enhanced resources, providing him with continuity of physiotherapy and other supportive activities in the final stages of his career.
Luke has also received financial support through the RNRMC for a development course to support his next career steps. “I wanted to do something to give a little back to what is an absolutely fantastic charity,” said Luke.
The RNRMC wishes Luke all the best beyond the Royal Navy and remains by his side throughout his life as a veteran.