Student skydives in memory of relatives who battled cancer

9 July 2014

An Edinburgh University student threw herself out of a plane to raise money for cancer prevention, after several members of her family fought the disease.

Arrti Singh, 19, took the big leap after four members of her family were affected by cancer.

Three members of the English Literature student’s family have passed away following their battles with the disease, including her aunt who was in her early twenties when she died from a rare form of spinal cancer.

Arrti, from Duddingston Park, Edinburgh, said: “We’re a very big and supportive family who stay strong for one another.

“My aunt Kiran was so beautiful and could do anything with her eyes closed. When she passed away it was very upsetting.

“My relatives have always been caring and protective of me, so I wanted to do something that could help protect others.

“Cancer is such a huge, vile disease and it can destroy so many lives. I wanted to try and get a silver lining from this very upsetting situation. By raising money for cancer prevention, I hope that it helps other people.”

Arrti’s great-uncle, Chiman Singh-Landa, died of pancreatic cancer and her great-aunt also died two years ago after getting breast cancer while her grandfather, Baldar Singh-Kusbia, survived Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

The student, who raised £400 for World Cancer Research Fund after she leapt out of a plane on April 20th in Fife, says that the jump was both terrifying and exhilarating.

She said: “When we flew above the clouds I was so excited. They looked like a blanket, I couldn’t believe it.

“When we jumped, I forgot to breathe. I couldn’t believe we were falling through the air.”

Michael Smeaton, World Cancer Research Fund’s deputy head of fundraising, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to Arrti for raising so much money for us. Her family have suffered a lot and her decision to try and help others by supporting cancer prevention is inspirational.”

Scientists believe almost a third of common cancers could be prevented through diet and lifestyle changes.

World Cancer Research Fund finances research in cancer prevention and provides health information on how to reduce your risk of developing cancer.

Notes to editors:

To support Arrti and World Cancer Research Fund, please call 020 7343 4200 or visit www.wcrf-uk.org.