James Bond star Daniel Craig has “discreetly” donated £10,000 to three fathers on a 300-mile charity walk in memory of their three young daughters, who each took their own lives.
Craig, who last week said farewell to the role of James Bond with the release of No Time To Die, “wasn’t looking for any thanks” with the gesture and just wanted to make a difference, according to suicide prevention charity Papyrus.
Andy Airey from Cumbria, Mike Palmer from Greater Manchester, and Tim Owen from Norfolk said the donation from the 53-year-old British actor was a welcome surprise.
The fathers, called 3 Dads Walking, set off on a 300-mile trek on Saturday to raise awareness about Papyrus, with the aim of helping to prevent other families from going through the agony of losing a child.
“As dads we have three different stories to tell, but each has the same tragic ending, the devastating loss of a daughter to suicide,” said Mr Airey, whose daughter Sophie took her own life in 2018.
“Daniel Craig has clearly been moved by the indescribable pain we and our families are suffering, and wants to help us to bring something positive out of the utter devastation of losing a child to suicide.”
Mr Airey continued: “We’d like to say a big thank you to Daniel and every single person who has supported us so far.
“We can’t thank you enough, and every penny we raise on every step of our journey will help to save young people who are struggling with life.”
Peter Holland, from Papyrus, said: “It’s been done very discreetly, it was us that traced it back to Daniel Craig rather than his management coming to us to say this is what he’s done, which makes it all the more fantastic.
“He wasn’t looking for any thanks, he just wanted to make the donation to make the difference.”
The trio will head south from Cumbria and walk through South Lakeland, as well as Lancashire, to Mr Palmer’s home in Greater Manchester.
Mr Palmer lost his 17-year-old daughter Beth to suicide in March 2020.
“3 Dads Walking is not a club I want to belong to, but along with Andy and Tim it gives us, as fathers, an opportunity to fight back and maybe make a difference,” he said.
“We hope that by linking our three homes and telling our three daughters’ very different stories, we will put a spotlight on young mental health and ultimately the brutal effects of suicide.”
After leaving Greater Manchester, the 3 Dads Walking will continue southeast through Cheshire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, and Lincolnshire before arriving at Mr Owen’s family home in King’s Lynn.
Mr Owen, who lost his 19-year-old daughter Emily in March 2020, said: “I strongly believe that in a moment of darkness my daughter made a wrong decision. Two minutes earlier, or later, it would have been different.
“Had she just taken time to think or to speak to someone, her decision and my family’s lives would be on another path. Instead, she decided she could no longer go on, leaving behind a devastating ripple effect on her family and friends.”
The group is planning to complete their challenge in 15 days, averaging 20 miles a day.
They hope to finish on 23 October.