Jeremy's Story

Reporter: Cassie Silver

He's competed in 3 Olympic Games. The world championships across over the globe, he's been ranked 6th in the world for swimming and been nominated for Young Australian of the Year. Jeremy says "My mum and dad made me swim and I didn't like it I wasn't very good at it but I am glad they made me"

What makes 25 year old Jeremy McClure so special? He's blind. 10 years ago Jeremy was a healthy and active 14 year old, "he was into everything, riding his bike everywhere he loves swimming, loved playing cricket"

But parents Sally and Ken noticed something wasn't quite right, "he would say it is fuzzy but he could see big shapes but he couldn't see me smiling at him and things like that"

Within 10 weeks, Jeremy was blind, left with only 2% of his vision. "From there we were just devastated but we were thinking that was the end of the world for Jeremy and no more school and all those things that go through your head"

Jeremy was diagnosed with labers hereditary optic neuropathy, a condition carried by his mother's side of the family. Jeremy says "The way i describe it is old TVs how they had the black and white dots and they make the noise static noise shh that's basically what I see on top of everything or in front of everything"

Jeremy's life completely changed, Ken and Sally say "it was like having a baby an infant again having to train that particular infant or baby how to do so many things in life"

But he refused to let go of his passion for sport. Less than 12 months later, Jeremy blind ambition saw him qualify for the 2004 Athens Paralympics. "He trained like any other full Olympian they trained long hours every day expect Sunday there's not only the swimming there's the gym and yoga and all those things" First Athens, then Beijing last year he swam in the London Paralympics. "The Paralympics is quite different to normal Olympics the crowd supports everyone whether you're a winner or whether you come last the cheer and the applause is much the same irrespective of where you finish"

Sally and Ken say "they said 80% of blind people are unemployed and that's what made us so worried" but it didn't worry Jeremy, he's become a fully qualified remedial massage therapist.

Everyday Jeremy makes the trip to work by train and bus with a little help from someone very special. Now 25, Jeremy has gone one better and turned to Triathlon guided the whole way as he can't even see the finish line.

If the Busselton Half Iron Man wasn't enough, Jeremy has qualified for the 2013 World Championship Para triathlon team in London. But he needs some guidance, "I need to find somebody that can do the whole event with me one guide obviously has to be quicker than me and they've got to be willing and want to help me out with the whole event" and he's also searching for sponsors. "It is fully sell funded so with that there's a lot of costs involved, the flights the guide if they need help with that"

"He's the perfect person to show that you can do anything if you put your mind to" Looking for love can be hard when you can't see, but Jeremy's inspirational attitude is what attracted girlfriend Heidi. "Someone that has lost so much can really make something so positive out of everything"

Ken and Sally says "She's also taken a huge load from us because now she's taken on that role of doing all those things that he can't do"

Together they train, travel, even watch movies "I've just got a stool that's right in front of the TV and i can sorta see what goes on, Heidi will be explaining half the movie to me"

Proving nothing is impossible. Heidi says "No matter what's going on if you can look at someone like Jeremy and make the most out of what you got then yeah"

Ken and Sally says "He's never won a medal gold medal at the Paralympics but as far as we're concerned he wins gold everyday"

Further Information

Contact Details

Heidi.michelle88@hotmail.com

0408 907 812

Donation Details

Jeremy McClure

BSB: 086006

ACC: 187303203