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John Maclean OAM
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John Maclean OAM

During fitness training, while cycling near his hometown, John Maclean was hit by an 8 tonne truck. The impact resulted in John suffering multiple breaks to his pelvis and back, a fractured sternum, punctured lungs, a broken arm, and left John a...

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John Maclean OAM Travels from NSW
Fee Range: ::$10001 to $15000

John Maclean OAM's Biography

During fitness training, while cycling near his hometown, John Maclean was hit by an 8 tonne truck. The impact resulted in John suffering multiple breaks to his pelvis and back, a fractured sternum, punctured lungs, a broken arm, and left John a paraplegic. It took astonishing courage and determination, but somehow this near-fatal accident was the making of him. Despite the grief of what he had lost, the excruciating physical pain and the challenges of daily life in a wheelchair, John decided he would become bigger and stronger than ever. He set about proving himself in the toughest events the world had to offer.
In 1995 John Maclean made history by becoming the first wheelchair athlete to finish the Hawaiian Ironman Triathlon, drawing on all his inner strength to continue to the finish line after falling outside cut-off times in the early stages.
In 1997 John Maclean not only finished within the cut-off times, he beat a third of the field and became the first ever wheelchair category winner. In 2002 John became the first non-American inducted into the Hawaiian Ironman Triathlon Hall of Fame.
Many more extreme sporting challenges followed, including becoming the first wheelchair athlete to swim the English Channel, complete the grueling Molokai Ocean challenge (World Championships for open water paddling), and even racing in the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.
But it was a spectacular crash at the Sydney 2000 Olympics, that led John Maclean to deal with the grief and loss he had been denying since his early childhood, when his mother committed suicide. The soul-searching that resulted, and a spur from his dying mentor, led John to further focus his tremendous energy and determination on helping others. The charitable foundation he established in 1998 – the John Maclean Foundation - is a national scale organization providing support and assistance to Australian wheelchair users under the age of 18, and has now raised more than $2,000,000. The foundation's mission is to inspire, motivate and enable physically challenged kids to chase their dreams and live life to the fullest.
John's book, Sucking the Marrow Out of Life (the title is a quote from the film Dead Poets Society which inspired John), is a first-person account of this extraordinary life.