A member of the Queen Alexandra Royal Nursing Corps has been reunited with patients that he once cared for, thanks to the Invictus Games.
Corporal Scott McNeice, 33, worked as a healthcare assistant at Headley Court where he is now receiving support following the amputation of his left leg, above the knee.
But in between the periods he'll be spending there this year, Scott has to fit in training for no less than six sports for which he has been selected to participate in Sydney - Archery, athletics, cycling, swimming, wheelchair rugby and travelling reserve for seated volleyball.
The Games became a beacon of light in his road to recovery and he was determined to be strong enough to attend the trials for the games in Australian.
“I was enthralled by the personal journeys of the competitors and their ability to get through the worst of times and come out stronger,” he said.
“There were plenty of people ready to tell me what I wouldn’t be able to do anymore. Taking part in the Games will help me prove to both them and myself that they are wrong, and that anything is possible. It has already helped to start opening my mind to a brighter future.”
Going to the Invictus training camps – during which he swam for the first time post-amputation – boosted Scott’s confidence so much. To discover that he has actually made the team, and for so many different sports, has made him believe that he can achieve anything if he puts his mind to it, and with continued support from his partner Caitlin Stokes.
Already an accomplished archer, Scott has been surprised how much he enjoys team sports too.
“It gives me a feeling of camaraderie and a chance to work with like-minded people that I have missed since being unable to return to work,” said the father of five-year-old Alexandra.
Since being wheelchair-bound for the past year, Scott has discovered a flair for wheelchair racing, and is also looking to get involved with a wheelchair rugby team.
He also intends to improve his woodworking skills in the workshop at Phoenix House - Help for Heroes' Northern Recovery Centre – when he found out he was going to have his leg amputated, he went in there and made himself a wooden prosthetic limb! – and hopes to learn welding too: both ideas for possible new careers.
His main aim though is to get back out on his motorbike, currently sitting unused in his garage.
“To get back out riding that would be incredible and give a huge feeling of freedom.
The Invictus Games have already started opening my mind to a brighter future.”
Learning that he'd made the team, wasn't the only highlight of Scott's week. Having recently been fitted with a prosthetic limb, he proudly walked through the doors of Phoenix House for the first time to cheers and applause from staff who had previously only seen him in a wheelchair.
Scott appeared on Forces TV news this week, talking about his amazing journey. Watch him here:
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