A former Royal Marine is taking on a mammoth challenge to raise vital money for charity.
Sam Deen, who served in Afghanistan, is appealing for sponsorship to help fund his planned expeditions at Argentina’s Mount Aconcagua, and Everest, and will donate excess cash to The Royal Marines Charity and Combat Stress.
The ex-serviceman, who lived in Leeds, has also spoken of his own battle with mental health since returning from a tour of Afghanistan.
Since leaving the armed forces, Bradford-born Mr Deen, 30, has worked as a dog handler in drug detection and security for private companies.
“Ever since leaving the Marines I haven’t really had a lot to do so I just have a lot of time to sit and dwell on things,” he told the YEP.
“I have been struggling mentally. I suffer from depression and anxiety. If I keep busy and have something to focus on then it goes away.
“It started after my tour of Afghanistan, I became really angry and was getting in to trouble.
“I was happy to be home but over the years the depression and anxiety has built up.”
Mr Deen has shared his experiences as the YEP is also calling on people in Leeds to help raise awareness of mental health issues as part of our #SpeakYourMind campaign.
He served in the Royal Marines from 2010 until 2014.
The dad-of-one needs to raise money to fund the trips, which cost more than £50,000 in total, including flights.
Mr Deen said: “The main battle now for me is trying to get the money to do it. I’m quite physically-fit but every year between four and 10 climbers die, so there is a risk.”
He is appealing for businesses to sponsor his expeditions.