Veterans

Daredevil 75-Year-Old Army Veteran Ticks Off Bucketlist With A Wing Walk

At the age of 75, Army Veteran and former military spouse Carol Cooke has fulfilled a life-long dream.

If a wing walk for charity has always been on your bucket list but you’ve never got around to it – take inspiration from this Great Grandma.

Former soldier, military spouse and Great Grandmother Carol Cooke has always dreamed of taking to the skies while standing on the wings of a flying aeroplane.

At the age of 75, she has done it.

To mark her birthday, in the same year as the D-Day 75 commemorations, Carol took to the skies on Tuesday.

After a good 10 minutes of flying in a 1942 Boeing Stearman aircraft, Carol was ecstatic.

"Absolutely brilliant, everybody should put it on their bucket list".

Carol Cooke

At the age of 17, Carol joined the Women’s Royal Army Corps as a chef in Little Chalfont, in Buckinghamshire, England, before marrying a fellow soldier and being posted overseas.

During her time on location in Hohne, Germany, she gave birth to her second son Nick and was then posted to Dhekelia in Cyprus before returning back to the UK.

Ahead of the walk, Carol said: “I just love anything like that, I love silly things.

“I’m not the average Great Grandma who sits at home knitting and sewing - a wing walk is something I’ve always wanted to do.

“When I first saw it done, it was with the Utterly Butterly plane and I always told people that I was going to be an Utterly Butterly lady, and now my dream is coming true."

Listen: Carol speaks about her wingwalking ambitions before the big day:

The Utterly Butterly Wing-walking Display Team is a British Aerobatics and wingwalking display team that shot to fame with its biplane shows as it advertised the well-known dairy spread. The team behind the brand AeroSuperBatics Ltd, is now known as the as the Breitling Wingwalkers under a new sponsorship deal. 

Carol has been raising funds along the way for Gloucestershire-based charity Hope For Tomorrow, which brings cancer care closer to patients’ homes with mobile cancer care units.

It is a charity close to her heart.

Her father Donald Pitt, a former Royal Marine who fought during World War Two, died from cancer.

"My Dad died at 46 so we didn’t really get our money's worth out of him because he died so young.

Donald Pitt

“He came home from leave in 1943. My mum fell pregnant and we didn’t see him again for over a year.

“I was 18 months old when my Dad came home from the war because he was on HMS Birmingham and they were out in Egypt at the time and just couldn’t get back.

“He’ll probably think I’m mad as well, but that doesn’t matter".

You can support Carol and her chosen charity Hope For Tomorrow by donating to the Just Giving Page.