Dylan Lloyd first started at ParaFed Otago back in 2011 when he was 7 years old. Kelsey Evans, ParaFed Otago Board Member and previous Sports Development Officer first met him in 2016 and knew he would go far in everything he set his mind to and focused on. Here are a few words from Kelsey highlighting some of Dylan’s story.
‘Dylan is focused, committed and has an incredibly supportive family. One of my highlights from my time at ParaFed Otago was at the 2018 Halberg Junior Games where Dylan came first in his classification. Dylan had been playing boccia for a while and this was a great chance for him to demonstrate what skills he had developed through training.’ Kelsey recalls, “I remember sitting there nervously, barely able to watch as I knew how much he wanted to win. With one ball to throw Dylan had won and called the game. I was overwhelmed with pride as I could tell how happy he was, yes I may have shed a wee tear.” When we asked Dylan what his favourite moment is from being a part of ParaFed Otago, he said this exact same thing!
‘2019, was a big year for Dylan as with the support of Raylene Bates he started wheelchair racing. Dylan started off using Adam Hall’s old chair, which was too big for him but with the help of Raylene and Invacare he was into his own chair and competing. He has only just started on his journey in wheelchair racing and we are all looking for to watching him in the future.’ Dylan recently competed at Challenge Wanaka in the Adaptive event and thoroughly enjoyed his experience.
‘Dylan also started playing Wheelchair Rugby, he attended the robin round competition against other teams around the country. Even though he was one of the youngest player he held his own taking on some of the Wheelblack players. He made a big impression within the wheelchair rugby community with his quick wit and fearless attitude. I have been every impressed with his willingness to learn and dedication to put in the hard work when required. It is very exciting to see the next generation of WCR players coming through and I am glad Dylan is part of them.’
When asked, Dylan says the best thing about being a part of ParaFed Otago is the awesome experiences and opportunities. It has given him lots of confidence and has made him more active and encouraged him to get involved in more sports. As for the future, Dylan sees himself playing wheelchair rugby and participating in wheelchair racing. He would recommend joining ParaFed because you get to meet new people, have awesome experiences and opportunities.
'Dylan is outstanding advocate for Para sports. He is always willing to give anything a go but also is willing to support others in their development. His competitive nature and enthusiasm to learn is admired by others. Dylan, I am so proud of all you have achieved and I am glad to have been part of your journey!' - Kelsey Evans