Triple amputee Mark Ormrod has spoken about the moment he took a tumble during a run that was captured on camera – sparking a viral video that helped him raise more than £249,800 for a charity close to his heart.
The former Royal Marine, known to millions for his motivational talks in which he inspires people to take a positive attitude to whatever problems they face in life, had initially pledged to run five kilometres with a fundraising target of £1,000.
The fundraising campaign had started off as a plan to shave his beard off for charity but he decided to keep the momentum going by running 5k - with a plan to carry out the run on March 12, 2021, on his carbon prosthetic legs.
However, he tripped over on the damp path during an earlier training run – and is seen on video slipping over when his prosthetic leg clips the ground.
Mark may have been knocked down, but, in perhaps his trademark determination for which he has become known, he gets up again – and he is captured in the video as he makes the effort to carry on, undeterred.
The moment captured the imagination of people all over the world as the video went viral – with thousands more donations pouring in to the charity drive.
It not only surpassed his original charity target but rocketed beyond all expectations - now standing at about £205,000 and climbing.
The 37-year-old from Plymouth in Devon is raising money for Reorg, A Charity that helps Military, Emergency Services and Veterans through Jiu Jitsu.
Mark, who was awarded an MBE in 2020 for outstanding services to the Royal Marines and the wider veteran community, spoke to BFBS Radio presenters Verity Geere and Richard Hatch about why he decided to keep the momentum up after shaving off his beard. He said:
“I hate running. I hated it when I had legs and I hate it now I don’t have legs, so we decided that would be a good option.”
Over the years, Mark has earned respect and recognition for his inspiration attitude – following the moment in 2007 when, during his second tour of duty in Afghanistan, he stepped on an impoverished explosive device (IED) which ripped off both his legs above the knee, and his right arm above the elbow.
The former Royal Marine has been raising money for Reorg, a charity that helps military, emergency services and veterans through Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, as form of therapy and to promote positive effects on the mind and body.
It is a cause close to his heart as Mark had long had a passon for martial arts - competing in full contact kickboxing, Muay Thai and boxing for the Marines before his injury.
Since then, he's used Jiu Jitsu to learn new disciplines which he has said challenge his mind and body.
Mark passed his initial fundraising target of £1,000 within 48 hours and decided to push on to raise more.
His fall happened while he was coming back from a practice run. The video of the moment started to gain public attention soon after it was posted on social media. Before long, it had gone viral - with thousands engaging with or sharing the post.
Mark, talking about why the video was posted on social media before going viral, said:
“I’m a big fan of showing the upsides and downsides… to give a realistic view of actually how difficult it is.”
Watch the viral video below...
When he was injured in Afghanistan in 2007, doctors feared Mark would never walk again, let alone run, but Reorg has helped Mark claim back another part of his life.
He has never allowed his injuries to define him and the charity has created a way for veterans like him to reintroduce themselves to sport. He said:
“It gave me back something that I thought was taken away from me forever, which is that Royal Marines roughty toughty, alpha male side of my life that I embraced so much.”