On Monday 22 August 2016, Year 10 student from Patrician Brother’s College, Blacktown Tim Hodge set off to Rio, on a journey of a lifetime, to compete at the 2016 Paralympics.
In 2016 Tim competed in the MCS Carnival taking the gold against numerous able bodied swimmers.
What makes Tim’s story even more amazing is his right foot was amputated when he was four. Timothy Hodge was born with a lower leg deficiency. When he was four years old the deficiency meant that he had to have his right foot amputated. He is also missing two fingers on his right hand and his right arm is shorter than his left.
The Patrician Brothers’ College Blacktown student developed an affinity for the pool from a young age and has quickly become a name Australian team selectors have had their eye on.
Timothy won gold in the 50m backstroke at the 2014 Australian Age Championships and the following year he stepped up and won silver in the 50m backstroke at the Australian Open Championships. His performance earned him selected to his first World Championship team.
At just 14 years of age he went to Glasgow for the 2015 IPC World Swimming Championships. He competed in seven events with his best results being fourth in the 4x100m medley relay and sixth in the 100m backstroke. Competing on such a big international stage at a young age was great experience for Timothy and put him in good stead for a Paralympic debut.
In June of 2016 at the World Championships in Berlin, Tim set a new World Record in the 400 metre individual medley.
Patrician Brother’s College Principal Santo Passarello said, “We are all extremely proud of Tim. He is an outstanding young man. A super athlete but more importantly a wonderful student who is respected and admired by all. Best wishes Tim and please stay safe”.
Tim said, “I am excited but a little bit scared! I am blessed to have been given this opportunity. I have been overwhelmed by the support I have received at school. I hope that I don’t let anyone down.”
From the College: “In 2013, Patrician Brothers’ College, Blacktown was represented in Rio de Janeiro at World Youth Day, the greatest single gathering of Catholics worldwide, by a record number of 25 delegates. In 2016 we will once again have reason to focus on Rio de Janeiro and not just because there will be Australians competing at the most significant sporting event in the world. It is with great pride and admiration that we congratulate current Year 10 student Tim Hodge, whose hard work and extraordinary talent have seen him selected in the Australian Paralympic swim team. Even at such a young age, the humility that Tim shows should be an example to all of us. His achievement is an inspiration to anyone who has ever dreamt of a goal that might seem impossible. Congratulations Tim – your college will be there with you in spirit when you take to the pool in Rio.”