Big jump for char­ity

North Harbour News - - NEWS - By SARAH CODDINGTON

A dar­ing sky jump for char­ity gave Wai­mon Thant-Cyn a bro­ken hip, but she says it was all worth it.

The Pine­hill, Al­bany, res­i­dent was born with the neu­ro­mus­cu­lar dis­ease spinal mus­cu­lar at­ro­phy.

She was not di­ag­nosed un­til the age of 10 when she moved to New Zealand from Myan­mar.

The con­di­tion causes loss of mo­tor neu­rones within the spinal cord and as a re­sult mus­cles be­come weak.

‘‘I’ve al­ways done things to the best of my abil­ity and I’ve never used my dis­abil­ity as an ex­cuse not to go for some­thing that I re­ally wanted,’’ she says.

She frac­tured her hip when she jumped from the plane and at first Ms Thant-Cyn thought it was just a pulled mus­cle.

The jump was a must on her list of things to do and al­though it took lots of in­ten­sive plan­ning she still went through with it.

To do the jump, Ms Than­tCyn had to wear ad­di­tional foam pad­ding, straps and some sup­port­ive braces.

‘‘De­spite many of my phys­i­cal re­stric­tions, I love ex­treme sports and have pushed my body be­yond its lim­its on more than one oc­ca­sion,’’ she says.

Ms Thant-Cyn raised more than $2000 for Mus­cu­lar Dys­tro­phy North­ern.

The funds will go to­wards youth pro­grammes.

Her favourite part of the jump was the parachute ride and she says it was scary jump­ing out of the plane.

‘‘I felt eman­ci­pated with­out my wheel­chair and free from hav­ing to worry about what oth­ers think about me – I didn’t have to please any­one – life seems quiet and sim­ple for the short pe­riod in the sky,’’ Ms Thant-Cyn says.

She knew there was ex­tra risk in­volved in her com­plet­ing the j ump, but does not re­gret do­ing it.

‘‘When I was in the plane I re­mem­bered think­ing that it was prob­a­bly go­ing to hurt badly but I hoped that I would live to tell the tale.’’

A must-do: Wai­mon Thant-Cyn of Al­bany, who uses a wheel­chair, do­ing a sky jump for char­ity.

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