In 2006 in Iraq, Simon Brown, risked his life to rescue six of his comrades whose vehicle had broken down.
As he was withdrawing from the area, a sniper’s bullet hit Simon’s face. The bullet shattered both his cheekbones, destroying his left eye and severely damaging his right eye. He was nearly completely blinded.
Ex-Service men and women like Simon who, having served our country with pride, now face perhaps their greatest battle – the battle to rebuild their lives after the devastating loss of their sight.
“The very first time I met with somebody from Blind Veterans UK I was given a talking watch – and it had a huge impact. How many times do we check our watches during the day? I hadn’t been able to do that and constantly had to ask other people, which made me feel dependent on them, like couldn’t do anything on my own. “The talking watch gave me independence – it helped me to understand that I didn’t have to let my sight loss stop me from living the life I wanted.”Simon
Your gift could help buy equipment like a liquid level Indicator to help veterans who have lost their sight make hot drinks safely and a talking watch so they can organise their lives without being dependent on others.
Blind veterans like Simon often experience losing their sight almost as a bereavement. Somebody who has lost their sight can find it close to impossible to imagine life without it. Simon also had to cope with losing the camaraderie of army life and the career he had loved.
As a proud soldier, he found it especially difficult having to rely on other people and says he felt like ‘a burden’ to his family and friends.
Today, Simon works for Blind Veterans UK. He sees it as his duty to help others who are now experiencing, as he did, the devastating loss of their sight.
“Blind Veterans UK gave me kit and support so I could begin to hope and believe in myself. They helped me to stop grieving for my sight and to concentrate on the things I could do.”
Despite proudly supporting blind veterans for 100 years, Blind Veterans UK is currently only able to reach one in ten veterans who would benefit from our services. But by giving a gift today, you could honour our visually-impaired ex-Service men and women and give them the help they need and deserve.
Pack up your troubles in your old kit bag and smile, smile, smile When you have a Lucifer* to light your fag, smile boys that is the style What is the use in worrying, it never was worthwhile, so Pack up your troubles in your old kit bag and smile, smile, smile”