TRIP­PING THE MILL FOR LIFE

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

TOWNSVILLE vet­eran Michael Ly­d­di­ard lost his right eye, his lower right arm and two fin­gers in Afghanistan but he is call­ing for peo­ple to help him fight the black dog.

The for­mer bomb dis­posal ex­pert, 40, has post- trau­matic stress disor­der and has him­self faced dark days.

But he said he would not let that pre­vent him liv­ing a full life with his wife and chil­dren.

Mr Ly­d­di­ard is do­ing the 24- hour Chal­lenge for Sui­cide Pre­ven­tion and he is call­ing on oth­ers to join him.

He said sui­cide was the lead­ing cause of death for Aus­tralians aged 18- 44 and took more lives than road ac­ci­dents or skin can­cer.

“The big­gest rea­son I am do­ing it is to build aware­ness and ed­u­ca­tion around sui­cide pre­ven­tion and be­ing able to do some­thing like this my­self, I hope it will help peo­ple feel em­pow­ered,” Mr Ly­d­di­ard said.

“I think ev­ery­one has been in a dark place at some time – it can af­fect any­one at any time.”

Mr Ly­d­di­ard said the Any­time Fit­ness gym at Do­main would join more than 200 gyms across Aus­tralia to raise $ 500,000 for Sui­cide Pre­ven­tion Aus­tralia and to create a com­mu­nity that knew how to ask for and give help.

“My goal is to en­sure the chal­lenge is com­plete and we hope there will be a num­ber of teams who come down dur­ing the 24 hours but the tread­mill has to be go­ing con­stantly,” he said.

“If I have to be on the tread­mill for two hours to keep it go­ing, I will be on it for two hours.

“Peo­ple can sign up for 15 min­utes or an hour.”

To get in­volved, you can spon­sor some­one or reg­is­ter your­self for the 24- Hour Tread­mill Chal­lenge by vis­it­ing http://www.any­tim­e­fit­ness.com.au/tread­mill­run/

Pic­ture: SCOTT RADFORD- CHISHOLM

WALK­ING THE WALK: Vet­eran Michael Ly­d­di­ard and Her­bert MP Cathy O’Toole.

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