As part of a series celebrating Morecambe’s Finest, the personalities and unsung heroes who make our town great, reporter Greg Lambert speaks to David Carr, the big-hearted postman who puts others first.
“I was always brought up that it is better to give than to take.”
David Carr has lived his life by this ethos, both in his job as a postman and during 30 years of charity work.
David, who works in the sorting office at Morecambe depot, was given a Royal Mail Community Champion award last year for supporting good causes and for saving a man’s life.
He rushed across the road near the post office to give CPR to the victim as he lay outside the Arndale Centre.
But for his prompt intervention, the man could have died.
This is typical of David’s selfless nature which has seen him take on gruelling challenges to help others.
He began his life of charity work in 1987 whilst in the army.
David was in the Forces for 16 and a half years, rising to the rank of Lance Bombadier, and serving in Germany, the Falklands, Belize and Ireland.
“I read about this girl in the paper,” he said.
“She was 17 and her parents had been killed by her own brother, and she was only entitled to £11 a week.
“I did 20km carrying a battery of 100 of my army friends, one at a time, with a fireman’s lift, to raise £10,000 to help her out.”
This year, aged 53, David was still clocking up the miles for good causes.
He recently cycled the tough 171-mile Coast to Coast Morecambe to Scarborough route, with fellow postman Mick Kennedy, to raise money for Combat Stress, the Forces veterans mental health charity, for prostate cancer and R.F.E.A (the Regular Forces Employment Association), raising £1,920.
R.F.E.A helps “build the bridge” between military and civilian life.
“When you come out of the army there’s not a lot in terms of setting you up in homes or getting a job,” he said.
“R.F.E.A is a new charity that helps people coming out of the Forces with accommodation.”
As this Saturday (June 28) is Armed Forces Day, David will be out and about in Lancaster’s Market Square helping the Combat Stress charity.
These are just some of the many causes he supports.
“I’m lucky that I have a good family behind me and my wife is very supportive,” he said.
“I want to give a little bit back and help as many people as I can.”
One person David has been helping is Amara Atkinson, a primary school girl from Morecambe who is aiming to compete in the 2017 World Dwarf Games.
Amara, who has a form of dwarfism called Achondroplasia. The bone growth disorder affects one in every 15,000 to 40,000 births.
But undeterred by her condition, Amara entered the Dwarf Sports Association National Games in Birmingham last year and came away with three gold medals.
Money from David’s cycle challenge, as well as from sponsorship for his recent completion of the Manchester 10K run, will go into a bursary fund held by the Dwarf Sports Association to enable Amara to compete in the Games in 2017, possibly in Australia.
“Amara’s dad Nigel is a postman too, and we got talking about her,” he said.
“We need £3,000 to get her over there and I want to get as many people on board to help her as she has progressed so much.”
Any local business wishing to sponsor or help send Amara to the Games can do so by contacting David on 07950604733.