World Record for Sahara Body Armour Marathon Runner

Image: Copyright Support Our Paras. Photographer Jon Bromley.

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Ex-Para Jonny Mortimer Hendry has won a world record for being the first person to run the 250km Moroccan Marathon des Sables wearing NP Aerospace body armour to raise money for Support our Paras and mental health awareness.

Jonny Mortimer Hendry completed ‘the toughest foot race on earth’ earlier this month in just 46 hours and 53 minutes, wearing a 10kg weighted vest, putting him in the top 40% of runners.

Jonny now at DEA Aviation served within the British Army Parachute Regiment for seven years including tours in Afghanistan. He said that despite being trained as a Para, the marathon was “by far the toughest challenge he had ever done physically and mentally and he did not think it was possible, especially during the last 20km.”

The reason for doing the race was to raise awareness of mental health issues as he battled post-traumatic stress disorder. Reiterating his campaign message, Jonny said: “When you go to war you wear body armour to protect you against bombs and bullets, but nothing protects your mind. Having set a world record for doing something I thought was previously unachievable I hope that I can help and encourage others to seek help to overcome their battles. With the war in Ukraine and other global conflicts, the pressure on mental health is huge. Any support we can give to bring the issue to the forefront of people’s minds is a benefit.”

So far Jonny has reached 50% of his £50k target for Support our Paras with the help of sponsors including NP Aerospace Edgar Brothers BeaverFit UK Firepot.

James Kempston, CEO, NP Aerospace, comments: “We are all amazed at the sheer determination Jonny has shown throughout the challenge. From our first meeting at the DSEI defence show last year to seeing him cross the finish line with a world record to his name is impressive. Soldiers’ and veterans mental health is an important cause and doing the marathon is an excellent way to bring attention to it.”

Natalie Urbaniak, Support Our Paras, comments: “Since leaving service, Jonny has continued to display The Parachute Regiment attitude of being ‘ready for anything’. We remain

proud to have supported him with his incredible physical achievements over the last few years and are very fortunate that he chooses to support us, and his Airborne family, in return. Raising the profile of mental health in our soldiers and veterans is something we take very seriously, and we are grateful to hve a great ambassador in Jonny to do this.”

To raise money

For more information about Marathon des Sables 35ème MARATHON DES SABLES - Site officiel

SUPPORT OUR PARAS supports Paras in The Parachute Regiment and Airborne Forces through the welfare of veterans, serving soldiers and their families and widows, and through the maintenance of its regimental efficiency, ethos, spirit and heritage.


Media Contacts

NP Aerospace

Caroline Hardiman, Marketing Manager

+44 (0) 24 7670 2802 / +44 (0) 7585 969841

Support Our Paras

Natalie Urbaniak, Fundraising & Communications Manager


+44 (0) 1206 817074  / +44 (0)7944 558783


Facts about Johnny Mortimer Hendry

  • Aged 34, lives in Clapham, London, went to Oundle School
  • Joined the British Army in 2008, was awarded a Scholarship to the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, where he was commissioned into The Parachute Regiment. He also served in specialist units during his career
  • Youngest Captain in the British Army at aged 23
  • Received a Mention in Despatches for Gallantry in Afghanistan
  • Deployed to Falklands, Kenya, Oman, Mongolia, Brunei, Belize and conducted numerous Operational tours in Afghanistan
  • Left the British Army in 2015, joined investment banking industry, set up a cyber security company, joined DEA Aviation in 2021 within the Business team
  • Co-Founder of Support Our Afghans, an initiative to help qualified Afghan forces
  • Pledged to raise £50,000 for Support our Paras


About NP Aerospace

NP Aerospace is a global armour technology manufacturer and vehicle integrator with an extensive portfolio developed using ultra-lightweight, high performance materials. Our products protect the lives of military and law enforcement personnel, enhancing security and resilience in high threat environments. The portfolio includes Ballistic Helmets and Shields, Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Suits, Body Armour Plates and Composite Armour for vehicles, vessels or aircraft. NP Aerospace has integrated and supported over 2,000 military vehicles and supplied one million combat helmets to UK, Canada, Italy and NATO allies and 200,000 body armour plates to British and Canadian Armed Forces. To find out more visit

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