Best friends to scale Mount Kilimanjaro in memory of caring Milena, 23, from Chigwell
PUBLISHED: 11:59 16 May 2017 | UPDATED: 11:59 16 May 2017
In memory of a 23-year-old Chigwell woman, who took her own life just six weeks ago, her partner and his best friend are going to summit Mount Kilimanjaro.
Life-long friends Benny Cheung, 28, of Upminster, and Paul Tang, 27, of Hornchurch, have set themselves the daunting task of climbing almost 6,000m in a bid to raise money and awareness of mental health charity Havering Mind.
Benny said: “I am slightly worried because it is going to be difficult but there is nothing going to stop us from climbing that mountain.
“Obviously, we want to raise as much money as possible for the charity as it does a lot of good, but more importantly we want to bring mental health to people’s attention.”
Milena, 23, from Chigwell, originally flew over from Poland to live in the UK about four years ago to be closer to her sister who also made the move. While living here, Milena soon fell in love with Paul and they were together for the majority of the time she spent in the country.
But after her sister died last year, Milena started to show signs of ill mental health, claiming her hair was falling out when numerous doctors said she was perfectly healthy.
Benny said: “She was so adamant something wasn’t right that she even flew back to Poland to see a doctor.
“We started to realise there was something wrong so booked for her to see a psychologist.” Not long after that, Milena disappeared and the pair never heard from her again.
Sadly, about six weeks ago Milena’s body was found in a lake in Poland.
Paul said: “We never expected to lose Milena so young and full of life, she was always laughing and smiling, never showing her troubles.
“She was the kindest, most caring person you could ever meet and she will be missed dearly.”
The pair will be taking on the mammoth challenge in September.
Benny said: “Even if we can just help one person, it will be worth it.”
To donate visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Benny-Cheung2.
If there is something troubling you call the Samaritans free on 116 123 from any phone. Visit haveringmind.org.uk for more details.