Grandad Bill Young from Hedge End killed by gust of wind in freak paragliding accident

Bill Young

Bill Young

First published in News
Last updated
Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

A DAREDEVIL grandad died when he plummeted 100ft in a paragliding accident.

Dad of three Bill Young, 64, lost control when a gust of wind got caught in the wing of his craft and fell to the ground at speed.

The family of the former TA reservist, who had served with the SAS, told how he had died doing what he loved most and had been an “adrenalin junkie” throughout his life.

Paying tribute, his son Gary told the Daily Echo how he and his siblings had learnt of the final moments of their father’s life from a friend, having been unaware he had gone to the site in Berkshire.

He said: “A friend said he was in a good mood, he was happy and bubbly, his goal for the day was that he landed safely.

Daily Echo:

Bill Young, who died in a paragliding accident

“The wing collapsed. He managed to correct it, flew for another couple of seconds, got to around 100 feet and then he fell to the ground at speed.”

Emergency services and friends of Bill rallied round in a desperate bid to save him, but despite their best efforts the experienced paraglider was pronounced dead at the scene.

Gary added: “He died doing something he loved. He would rather have gone that way.”

Bill, from Hedge End, grew up in the area and went to Wildern School. He leaves behind three children – Gary, Kay, and Guy.

Guy, 37, said: “He was very proud that he brought us up. He loved us all greatly.”

Kay, 38, added: “He would try everything – he always said he never wanted to grow up.

“He would check the wind first thing in the morning before he started work. That was his life. He was always there if you needed him.”

Bill, who had seven grandchildren, was a member of 21 SAS Unit attached to D squadron and was a self-employed gas heating engineer.

During his training he carried out 97 jumps in the UK and across Europe.

He was also a regular face in the Daily Echo during his lifetime – particularly making the headlines in 1993 when he cycled 13,000 miles in 13 months from Perth in Scotland to Perth in Australia to raise cash for a Wessex Heartbeat campaign.

A guard of honour will be at his funeral on Friday, August 15 at 11.45am at Wessex Vale Crematorium, Bubb Lane in West End.

The family have asked for flowers from the family only and any donations to be made to the SAS Regimental Association.

An inquest into Bill’s death will be held at Newbury Town Hall on a date to be set.

Comments (1)

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9:01am Sat 9 Aug 14

Kirsty666 says...

Rest in peace all those that have died in recent days x
Rest in peace all those that have died in recent days x Kirsty666
  • Score: 9

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