26 December 1975 |
Edward James Stafford, known as Ed Stafford (born 26 December 1975), is an English explorer. He holds the Guinness World Record for being the first human ever to walk the length of the Amazon River.
Stafford was born in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, England and raised in Leicestershire. He was adopted as a baby by Barbara and Jeremy Stafford, who were both solicitors in Leicestershire. Stafford joined the British Army in 1998, serving as an infantry officer in the Devonshire and Dorset Regiment. After completing an operational tour of Northern Ireland in 2000, Stafford left the Army as a captain in 2002. It was after his expedition to the Amazon in 2010 that Stafford began a search for his biological parents, whom he managed to track with the help of his sister, Janie. Says Stafford upon the reason for searching for his biological family; “There had always been this background intrigue. I looked for my birth family, not because I needed new parents in my life, but because it’s just inherent to want to know.” From his biological family, he has two younger brothers. Ed was educated at Uppingham and was a cub and a scout in Leicestershire as a boy and considers it a key component in his upbringing that led him to a life as an expedition leader.
On 9 August 2010, he became the first person to walk the entire length of the Amazon River, documented in the 2011 TV series Walking the Amazon on Channel 5. Stafford's expedition began with a friend, Luke Collyer, on 2 April 2008, on the southern coast of Peru. Collyer left after three months, and Stafford completed the journey with Gadiel “Cho” Sánchez Rivera. He undertook the attempt for several charities.
Also in 2011, Stafford was awarded the Mungo Park Medal by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society in recognition of outstanding contributions to geographical knowledge through exploration. He was not presented the award until 2014 at an event in Perth Scotland.
Commissioned by Discovery Communications, in August 2012 Stafford filmed a three-part survival experiment for Discovery Channel where he was dropped on the uninhabited tropical island of Olorua ( ) in the Pacific for 60 days with no food or equipment to help him survive. "Ed Stafford: Naked and Marooned"  was aired on Discovery Channel in the UK in March 2013 and "Naked Castaway" (US version) aired in the USA in April of the same year. Stafford's book of the 60 days in isolation was released in the UK (Virgin Books) in June 2014 and is due to be released in the USA (Penguin Books) in September 2014.[needs update]
Stafford is now an established face of Discovery Channel and has his own self-filmed series Marooned with Ed Stafford that is a joint Europe and US Discovery Channel commission.  He is due to start shooting his next project for Keo Films, entitled Ed Stafford: Into The Unknown, which will follow Stafford on his travels to remote locations to investigate strange and inexplicable markings which have baffled scientists. The program will air on Discovery Channel UK and its international subsidiaries in the latter part of 2015. 
Prince's Rainforests Project
- Ed Stafford: Guinness World Record for being the 1st man to walk the Amazon.
- TV Survival Expert Ed Stafford on birth parents search: I don't think explorers are at peace with themselves Mirror. 12 January 2015.
- Ed Stafford, British Man, Becomes First To Walk Along Entire Amazon River
- The ME Association is one of Stafford's charities
- "Water Way To Go" in The Young Times .
- "Up the River – but with a paddle" in Geographical Magazine .
- Barrowcliffe, Mark (5 December 2009). "The REAL king of the jungle". Mail Online. Retrieved 9 August 2010.
- Diane Sawyer´s ABC News "Person of the Week".
- Jackson, Peter (9 August 2010). "Amazon adventure: Ed Stafford's trek from source to sea". BBC News. Retrieved 9 August 2010.
- European Adventurer of the Year 2011.
- Guinness World Record holder
- Daily Mail article 14 March 2013
- IMBD entry
- Ed Stafford ties with Keo for Discovery Adventure Broadcastnow.co.uk. 27 February 2015.
- Ed´s Adventure Blog for Kids