THE fiancee of a Penarth marine that has spent the last year fundraising in his memory is celebrating after reaching her £13,000 target.
Royal Marine Paul 'Woody' Woodland died at the age of 32 during a training exercise in October 2012.
His fiancee of five years Sian Earls, who changed her surname to Woodland in tribute to him, has raised more than £13,100 in his memory herself, with friends completing fundraising on Paul's behalf also raising more than £26,500.
All the money raised has gone towards the Royal Marine Association, Royal Marine Charitable Trust Fund, Royal British Legion, and Devonshire Air Ambulance.
Sian, 29, said that the thought of raising more than £13,000 was "fantastic" and it still hadn't sunk in that she'd reached her fundraising target.
“I’m just in awe of everybody for helping me reach my target and feel proud and honoured to be Paul’s fiancee,” she said.
“All this money can go towards helping families and marines.
“It makes me proud that people want to raise money in Paul’s memory.”
Sian has now set herself the target of raising £10,000 this year for the Royal Marine Charitable Trust Fund in memory of Paul.
Planned fundraising challenges this year include Sian's brother Lewis Earls running for 24 hours nonstop around an athletic field with ultra runner Rhys Jenkins in June, a dinner in Cardiff in October, Sian taking part in a “terrifying” skydive with Paul's mum Alicia, and Sian also running a half marathon.
Sian is also planning on studying psychology at university so that she can help soldiers suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
"For the next few years I plan to concentrate on raising money for military charities and ensuring that the community doesn't forget about Paul,” she said.
She is also currently volunteering with the Royal Marine Charitable Trust Fund and with a group of veterans with PTSD that meet at the Penarth Pier Pavilion every Tuesday in Room 617.
“I meet with them and talk about we can help them,” she said.
She added that in future she would like to help marines with their rehabilitation after the two years that they are currently cared for by the military.
Last year’s money was raised through online fundraising, Sian climbing Mount Kilimanjaro with a team of other Royal Marine fundraisers, taking part in a 10km commando challenge obstacle course in Exmouth and Sian’s brother Lewis Earls taking part in a 3500 mile cycle across America with brothers Rhys and Scott Jenkins and Ross Stephenson.
Sian Woodland’s new fundraising page is: http://www.justgiving.com/Woody80
You can also donate by texting RMPW81 £1 (or any other amount) to 70070.
You can also ‘like’ the “Royal Marine Paul 'Woody' Woodland, gone but never forgotten” Facebook page and follow it on twitter @Sianwoodland84 for the latest updates about her fundraisising.