The sky was the limit for one woman from Great Barr after she took the flight of a lifetime in an extreme challenge for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, raising more than £2,150 for the hospital’s Oncology Unit.

Twenty-two-year-old adrenaline junkie, Mary Delaney, took to the skies on a sponsored wing-walk over London to raise money for the hospital where a close family friend fought and won her battle with childhood cancer.

Mary’s friend, Paige Taylor, was just ten years old when a trip to her GP for an unrelated pain in her shoulder lead to a shocking stage-four cancer diagnosis. The doctor noticed that Paige had a swollen tummy and referred her for an immediate scan that revealed Wilms’ Tumour, a type of kidney cancer that usually only affects children.

Paige’s parents were absolutely devastated and within a week of the diagnosis, their journey at Birmingham Children’s Hospital began with an operation to insert a central line into Paige’s chest so that she could receive her treatment. Over the 18 months that followed, Paige underwent gruelling chemotherapy treatment that made her sick and lose her hair, and operations to remove her kidney and the tumour. Throughout the whole ordeal though, Paige bravely fought on and in 2018 at the age of 16, she was finally given the all clear. 

Along with her own family, Mary had been following her friend’s journey and seeing how grateful the Taylors were for the first class care and treatment Paige received at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, Mary knew she wanted to do something to give back to the hospital on their behalf.

A seasoned fundraiser, Mary had taken on daring challenges in the past such as abseils, bungee jumps and skydives but she knew she needed to take this challenge to the next level and do something incredible for Paige. And it wasn’t long before Mary knew a daring wing-walk was just the challenge she needed.

Mary said: “I’ve always loved doing whatever I can to help people and when I heard about the amazing care Paige received when she was fighting her cancer, something inside me just had to do something to say thank you.

“The wing-walk itself was the best thing I’ve ever done, it was absolutely incredible and nowhere near as scary as you might think! The best part was knowing that I was doing something that would help other families like Paige’s.”

Miranda Williams, Head of Public Fundraising at Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, said: “Mary literally went above and beyond in support of her friend Paige and we think that’s so inspiring, not to mention brave! The money she raised will go towards helping us do more for sick kids and their families, just as we did for Paige and her family.”