Ed Jackson: ‘I want to be the first quadriplegic to climb Everest’

Former Wasps player was told he would never walk again after an accident in 2017 – two years on his sights are set very high indeed

“‘I seem to be in a good mood all the time,” Ed Jackson says as he remembers the accident which broke his neck, ended his rugby career and left him paralysed with a medical prognosis that he would never walk again. Next Monday it will be exactly two years since Jackson hit his head so hard when diving into a swimming pool that he fractured his C6 and C7 vertebrae and shattered a disc. His spinal cord was partially crushed and he had to be resuscitated three times.

Jackson not only survived but, showing immense will, he shocked his doctors by defeating the paralysis which left him immobile from the neck down. A year after the accident, Jackson, who walks with a heavy brace on his leg, climbed Snowdon in Wales. He is now preparing for two imposing climbs which, in November, culminates in him scaling the 6,500m Mera Peak in the Himalayas as he strives to raise enough money to build a spinal injury unit in Nepal.

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