Former marine Mark discuses taking a step back from Royal Marines Charity

Former Royal Marine Mark Ormrod

Former Royal Marine Mark Ormrod - Credit: Matt Elliott

David Fitzgerald, of BBC Radio Devon, writes for this title.

Former Royal Marine Mark Ormrod MBE is taking a step back from the Royal Marines Charity he has been heavily involved in for over a decade. 

It's a decision that has not been made lightly, as he told David FitzGerald of BBC Radio Devon.

Mark said: “I have worked for the charity for ten years since being medically discharged in 2010.

I thought I would never work again.

“They made a position for me, got me to knuckle down, took me all around the world and gave me purpose, a meaning and a focus in life. I 
met some incredible people but last year my wife got a new job, she got promoted twice and became part of the senior management team.

“We were homeschooling our children and with all of the other fun and games that last year threw at us, it became increasingly difficult to juggle work with family commitments.

“For me, it just felt right that after Becky had supported me for so long in everything that I do, it was now the right moment that she took the reins 
and had her time to shine doing something that she’s very naturally gifted at, which is also making a huge difference in people’s lives.

“She is achieving some incredible work for Improving Lives Plymouth and it’s not just a ‘nine to five’ post.

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“I’m even acting as a chauffeur driving her around delivering food parcels and welfare packages to vulnerable veterans. I really enjoy it and I am still in that veteran world which I am so used to.”

I asked Mark to take me back to the day he walked through the gates of the training camp 
at Lympstone.

What was going through his mind?

“It was back in February 2001.

"I was 17 years old and it was terrifying. It was a baptism of fire but if you are joining the world’s elite, what would you expect? I grew up 
very quickly training with the Marines and it has served me very well in life ever since then."

Would he do it again?

“Yes. In a flash, absolutely. The friends you make, the bonds you create, the skills you pick up is nothing that you can 
obtain in ‘civvy’ street. OK, I was injured and had to leave but yes, I would do it all again.”

I suggested the word ‘injured’ was an understatement!

“Yes…I was seven years into the service and I had already done a tour of Iraq in 2003. But in 2007 I was deployed with 40 Commando to Afghanistan.

"On Christmas Eve I was on a routine foot patrol when I stood on an ‘IED’ which resulted in me losing both of my legs above 
the knee and my right arm above the elbow.

“I died on the back of a Chinook helicopter but the medics on the aircraft did a procedure which had only just been cleared to be used a few 
days earlier. It involved drilling into someone’s tibia and fibula and putting intravenous fluids in that way but …slight problem…I didn’t have a tibia 
or fibula left so they drilled into my hip! It had never been done before, fortunately it worked.

“I came round and went back to Camp Bastion for surgery.”

So what does the future hold 
for Mark?

“I am working on editing my first book ‘Man Down’ and my second is with the publishers. Last year I signed a contract with a movie company to 
develop a film on those two books but as like everything, it has been put on hold.

“I am going to be kept busy but the great thing is that I am going to run my own diary and it will run around the Ormrod 
family schedule. A re-organisation of life not a major change."

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