A giant of this age and of previous ages too!
Sir Ranulph Fiennes comes from a family which can be traced directly back to Charlemagne. The family motto, "Look for a Brave Spirit" reflects, perhaps, that secret ingredient in the character and life of a man whose achievements match any of those that fill the story of Mankind with inspiration and endeavour.
Born in 1944 and educated at Eton, his career took a military course with service in the Royal Scots Greys and the SAS. In 1968 he joined the army of the Sultan of Oman, led the British Expedition on the White Nile in 1969 and received the Sultan’s Bravery Medal in 1970. That same year he married Virginia who was to be such a support to his later achievements.
Sir Ranulph’s spirited approach to life’s challenges resulted in over thirty expeditions under his leadership. To name but a few:- The Transglobe Expedition, the first surface journey round the world’s polar axis: the discovery of the lost Arabian city of Ubar: the first ever hovercraft ascent of the longest river in the world: the North Polar Unsupported Expedition: the Pentland South Pole Expedition, the first unsupported crossing of the Antarctic Continent resulting in the longest unsupported polar journey in history.
Despite his suffering a major heart attack and a double by-pass operation, the year 2003 saw Sir Ranulph and Dr Mike Stroud run seven marathons in seven days on seven continents. An incredible feat!
It is not surprising that his accolades include countless awards too:-The Sultan of Oman’s Bravery Medal, the Royal Geographical Society’s Founder’s Medal, the Gold Medal of the New York Explorer’s Club, the Livingstone Medal of The Royal Scottish Geographical Society, and University Doctorates from Loughborough University, the University of Central England in Birmingham and the University of Portsmouth are a small selection!
In 1987 the Queen awarded Sir Ranulph and Ginny the Polar medal. His wife was the first woman ever to receive this award and he is the only person ever to be awarded a double clasp for both polar regions. In 1993 he received the OBE for human endeavour and charitable services. He has raised over six million pounds for charity thus far!
Amazingly, in his spare time he has managed to write sixteen books including a best selling biography of Captain Scott which was published in 2003.
Ranked by IBM as top motivational speaker from over seven hundred of the world’s top speakers, Sir Ranulph continues to give thrills and inspiration to audiences all over the world in order to raise essential funds for his Healthy Hearts Appeal.
What a man! Prince Charles spoke for us all when he said , "My admiration for Ran is unbounded and thank God he exists. The world would be a duller place without him."