Dylan Alcott OAM
Dylan’s $100,000 “Ridiculous idea”
Nobody can say that 24 year old Dylan Alcott is an underachiever:
- Paralympic Gold and Silver medallist in wheelchair basketball at Beijing 2008 and London 2012
- The youngest Gold Medal winner in wheelchair basketball - 2008 summer Paralympics in Beijing
- World #4 in Quad division wheelchair tennis, with title wins at the British and Belgium Opens
- Medal of the Order of Australia winner
- Motivational speaker, drummer, wheelchair crowd surfer, party animal
Even more amazing when you consider that Dylan was born with a tumour wrapped around his spine, with an operation to remove it leaving him a paraplegic at the age of 10. Years of constant hospital stays gradually wore him and his family down.
It was at this point that Starlight stepped in. As Dylan puts it: “Depressed and upset, the Starlight Children’s Foundation came to my rescue and granted me and my family a wish to swim with the dolphins at Sea World on the Gold Coast. It was a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience that has stayed with me my entire life.”
I really cannot thank Starlight enough for that wish and this is my way of giving back.Dylan Alcott
Buoyed by a new outlook and determined to maintain his fitness, Dylan took up wheelchair tennis.
However this wasn’t enough – Dylan had always wanted to repay those who had helped him along the way. In 2014 while driving past Melbourne’s National Tennis centre he came up with an idea – he would raise $100,000 for Starlight and another charity close to his heart by playing tennis non-stop for 24 hours, becoming a world record holder in the process.
In his typically honest style, he described it as “..a pretty ridiculous idea”, for which he trained 5 hours a day and completed a half marathon in Melbourne during the process.
Dylan’s dream was fulfilled on December 11 and 12 at Tennis Australia, Melbourne Park. He was joined on the court by a host of tennis stars including Sam Stosur, Casey Dellacqua and Sam Groth, as well as basketballer Liz Cambage and AFL stars Jack Watts, Tom Hawkins and Jack Riewoldt.
Dylan afterwards described the event as ‘brutal’ but has so far raised $75,000 of his $100,000 target.
As Dylan sums up: “Having a disability can be very hard, especially for kids growing up. These donations will assist in granting wishes for sick children and purchasing equipment to enable them to live better lives.”
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