A teenager from Birmingham is facing six months in hospital and the possibility she might never walk again after damaging her neck and spine in a parachute accident.
Jessica Hiam, aged 17, was on a school trip with pupils from Great Barr Comprehensive when the accident happened.
The A level student, from Kingstanding, landed badly and needed a four-hour emergency operation, but doctors fear she has lost the use of her legs.
Her grandfather Donald Hackett, a retired painter and decorator, spoke of the family's anguish over what had happened.
The 69-year-old grandfather-of-eight, of Marshall Grove, Great Barr said: "Jessica phoned her mum the day before the jump and told her she was in two minds about doing it.
"Her mum warned her that if she did not want to do it, she should just come home.
"I don't think she wanted to do it in the first place, but she just felt she couldn't say no after going all the way there.
"Had it been a twin jump, it would not have been so bad, but she jumped alone. Jessica is a really quiet girl, and only did the jump to prove she could be outgoing. I'm devastated."
Jessica, performed the jump on Tuesday in Andover, near Salisbury, Wiltshire.
She and the other students had planned to do a number of jumps but the remainder were cancelled after her accident.
She was airlifted to Salisbury Hospital, where doctors took bone from her hip to repair her spine.
Now she faces another six months in the spinal unit of t he hospital while she recovers.
Jessica's mother Doreen Quinn, aged 49, and her father Vince Hiam, a 52-year-old porter from Erdington, are at her bedside.
Her sisters Rebecca Quinn, a 27-year-old shop manager, Lisa Hiam, aged 27 and Laura Hiam, a 14-year-old pupil of Great Barr Comprehensive are also comforting her.
Mr Hackett said: "My daughter rang me and said Jessica had damaged her neck, but she didn't know until she got there how bad it was," he said.
"The doctors then told her they had to do an operation. Jessica has been sedated because of the pain, but she can't move her legs. She has just been blinking her eyes in response to questions.
"This is very difficult for us."
Mr Hackett urged parents to think twice before allowing their children to take part in events like parachute jumps.
"I do not want this to happen to somebody else's child," he said.
"She just should not have jumped solo. I really don't think she should have done it as it's so dangerous.
"She is so precious to this family and we want the best for her. Now, she might be in a wheelchair for life."
Jessica is still waiting for her AS Level exam results in English Literature, Psychology and Geography.
She is a keen artist and was looking forward to going to university in 2007.
Staff at the school expressed their concern for Jessica through a Birmingham City Council statement, which said: "Our thoughts and prayers are with Jessica, her family and friends."