Former serviceman from Downham Market brings home Warrior Games medals
A former RAF serviceman from Downham has brought home four medals after serving his country again in a major sporting event.
David Rose, 48, was one of 40 veterans and service personnel who were selected by military charity Help for Heroes to represent the UK at the Warrior Games which took place in America.
Mr Rose, who left the Royal Air Force in February due to life-changing medical conditions, brought home a silver medal in the 50m breaststroke for his class of disability, a bronze medal in 18 point 4x50m relay and bronze medals in both the recumbent cycling time trial and road race events.
“I feel incredibly privileged and honoured to have competed under the flag of the UK alongside so many inspirational people,” he said.
The Warrior Games, which took place in Colorado, is a major sporting event for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women.
This year, the event saw around 265 service members and veterans from America, the UK, Australia and Canada take part in adaptive sports, including athletics, cycling, indoor rowing, swimming and wheelchair basketball.
Mr Rose, who worked as an aircraft engineer with the RAF since 1986, is in constant pain due to nerve damage to his right arm, shoulder and hand caused by a cycling accident in 2009.
His arm has a limited function and his knee is also weak so he cannot run or do high impact sports.
“It is an important marker in my recovery when I consider how I was physically and mentally 12 months ago.
“A lot of people and organisations have invested time and money in me when I was at my lowest. This selection is one way to say thanks for their belief.”
Mr Rose said he has been particularly well-supported by the team at the Help For Heroes Recovery Centre in Colchester.
“I was always into sport and outdoor activities but with injury I thought, wrongly, this was over, this took me to a very bad place,” he added.
“Being shown and encouraged that I can still do sport has been a life changer.
“I feel so much taller having returned from the Warrior Games.”
Anyone who is a wounded, injured or sick military personnel or veteran and in need of support can visit Help for Heroes’ website at helpforheroes.org.uk.