Double Amputee Riding Length of NZ
9 March 2009
Double Amputee Riding Length of NZ to Raise Funds for Bionic Ears
John Nelson, a double amputee, is undertaking an epic 4,000km journey through New Zealand to raise money for the Pindrop Foundation and the Bionic Ear Institute to help profoundly deaf people hear again with a cochlear implant.
John Nelson is 67 years old and a double amputee following a near fatal case of meningococcal septicemia in 2002. He spent five months in hospital and lost both legs below the knee. Since then he has done two very successful fundraising bike rides in Australia raising $85,000 and covering 14,000kms using a custom built 3 wheeler bike.
John departed from Christchurch on February 16th and hopes to average more than 70 kms a day. He will ride for at least 8 hours a day.
John and wife Kay have raised four children, two of whom were born profoundly deaf. So John has been able to recognise the great benefits of cochlear implants and what it would have meant to his children had it been available.
A long time Rotarian John is being assisted by the Hornby Rotary Club and plans to stop at 30 Rotary clubs around the country.
The Pindrop Foundation’s spokesperson Elena Keith says John will be raising much needed funds to enable a greater number of implant operations in New Zealand.
“Cochlear implants can make a real difference to people suffering from hearing loss. Around 120 people are on the waiting list and this is growing as demand for services increases. We believe that if the technology is available then no one should have to suffer in silence.
We are delighted that John has chosen to support the Pindrop Foundation while he is here in New Zealand and would like to pay tribute to his contribution to advancing cochlear implant technology through the Bionic Ear Institute. The funds raised are so important to ensure that we can continue to enable deaf people to hear again.“