Alison Hammond panics after going to shake hands with ‘hero’ war veteran

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Alison Hammond had a moment of panic when she accidentally went to shake hands with a ‘hero’ war veteran who appeared on This Morning before realising that it wouldn’t be Covid-safe.

On Thursday’s edition of the ITV programme, Dermot O’Leary and Alison were joined by Ben Parkinson, a former paratrooper who lost both of his legs and suffered brain damage 15 years ago in Afghanistan.

Ben, who defied odds to speak again and received an MBE in 2013, was joined by his mother on the sofa.

Near the end of their interview, Ben spoke about his upcoming charity challenge, for which he plans to parachute off Mount Everest.

Ben told Alison that she’s going to be parachuting with him, a statement that prompted the This Morning hosts to burst into laughter.

After expressing his wish for Phillip Schofield to also join him on his charity initiative, Alison made an accidental gaffe while thanking Ben for joining them on the show.

‘Ben, thank you so much,’ she said, before asking: ‘Are we shaking on it?’ as Ben extended his hand towards her.

Just before shaking Ben’s hand, Alison remembered that she wasn’t allowed to do so, bringing her hand back and stating: ‘Not allowed to shake, so it might not happen,’ in reference to the jump off Mount Everest.

Ben told Alison to ‘elbow me’, instead, a request she happily obliged.

But as the programme cut to adverts, Alison appeared to panic over her near-blunder, exclaiming: ‘What have I done?!’ before laughing.

Several This Morning viewers praised Ben as a ‘hero’ and a ‘legend’, with one tweeting: ‘Nothing but Respect for Ben.’

‘You have to massively respect this man for learning how to talk again and being positive throughout this whole thing; hugely incredible. Must be a hugely difficult experience to go through. #thismorning,’ one person said.

‘In tears watching #ThisMorning Ben Parkinson, absolute complete and utter hero,’ another remarked.

Ben’s mother was also showered with complimentary messages, with one reading: ‘What an incredible mum #Benparkinson has. I can see where his drive & enthusiasm for life comes from. What an inspiration this man is.’

‘#ThisMorning Ben is a legend, and proves that when you put your mind to anything and have hope and determination you can achieve so much. He’s looking so well too. And his mum is amazing,’ another wrote.

This Morning airs weekdays at 10am on ITV.

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