Rolleston resident Aaron Coull is gearing up to celebrate the greatest gift of all by participating in the Australian Transplant Games.
Aaron, 44, received a life-saving heart transplant in 2011 at the New Zealand Transplant Unit and now he is ready to compete in Australia’s most inspirational sporting event.
The Games, which are held every two years, will commence on September 24th and run until October 1st, in Sydney. They promote the benefits of donation and transplantation.
Aaron will compete in the tennis and the five kilometre walk.
“Our athletes demonstrate living proof that transplantation saves lives. What’s more, it allows them a quality of life they might not have experienced for years,” said Chris Thomas, the CEO of Transplant Australia.
“Competing at the Transplant Games means a lot to me,” Aaron commented. “Not only do I get to represent my country, and my family, but most of all I get to represent my hero, a man I never got to meet, my donor,” he said.
“My training has been general fitness, playing tennis with my children a couple of times a week and lots of walking, as well as a game of squash and biking weekly too.”
“Just going to the Games isn’t the main achievement though, my main goal is telling so many people about it and to talk about organ donation. To make the decision to include ‘donor’ on your licence is a decision made with your family and loved ones.
“I pretty much lead a normal life, work full time and have done so much as a family with my wife Adele and children Ashleigh and Todd. I am involved with the kids’ sports’ teams and get a lot of enjoyment from seeing them having fun, in whatever they are involved in. As a family we have been overseas for holidays and we are really looking forward to travelling to Sydney, also as a family. Every minute we spend together is very special, as I know I won’t be around forever, so we really do make the most of life these days.”
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