Catholic secondary students dive into Rio 2016 Paralympics

16/9/2016
Catholic secondary students dive into Rio 2016 Paralympics
Catholic secondary students dive into Rio 2016 Paralympics


Two students from Catholic schools in the Diocese of Parramatta embarked on a journey of a lifetime representing Australia in the Paralympic swimming squad at the 2016 Rio Paralympics. 

Year 10 student from Patrician Brothers’ College, Blacktown Tim Hodge, who was born with a lower leg deficiency and had to have his right foot amputated at only four years of age, developed a love of swimming from a young age, catching the attention of Australian Olympic selectors. 

In June of 2016 at the World Championships in Berlin, Tim set a new World Record in the 400 metre individual medley. He also competed in the MCS Carnival taking the gold against a number of able bodied swimmers. 

What makes Year 9 student Jenna Jones’ story incredible is that she was diagnosed with rod-cone dystrophy, a rare degenerative eye disease, whilst in Kindergarten. 

Catholic secondary students dive into Rio 2016 Paralympics
Catholic secondary students dive into Rio 2016 Paralympics


Being a natural athlete, Jenna took to swimming like a fish to water, but it was not without it’s struggles. Jenna initially had trouble with competitive swimming, as the wash from other swimmers exacerbated the vertigo she felt due to her visual impairment. 

'I think people of often have a misconception about how hard Paralympians have to train and I would just like to say that the dedication and hard work Jenna has put into her swimming is that of a true athlete,' said Jenna’s coach Nick Robinson. 'We are very excited to see how Jenna performs, especially against so many older swimmers.' 

Tim said, he was looking forward to competing in Rio but not without nerves. 
'I am blessed to have been given this opportunity and I just hope I don’t let anyone down.' Tim said.
 
Posted By Natasha Borg at 16/09/2016 9:49:04 AM
 
   
  
 

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