David (43) had an accident in 1989 when he was 17. He came off his motorbike and hit a lamppost. The policewoman, who witnessed it happen, mentioned he wasn’t speeding and must have clipped the curb on the bend. He had just passed a bicycle and it is assumed he was checking the cyclist was ok, as David also cycled and was aware motorbikes make a bit of a draught going by.
He was in a coma for 6 months. On returning home from hospital, just in time for Christmas, he started a period of intensive rehabilitation that continues to this day.
He has paralysis of his right leg and arm and needs to use a wheelchair, but can walk short distances with help. The language and speech areas of David’s brain have also been affected and epileptic seizures are under constant management. He has quite an extensive one-word vocabulary, but struggles to make sentences without help. This is not to say David cannot communicate, he is acutely aware of all that is happening around him (and possibly more), and his sharp sense of humour will somehow find the right word, or expression to surprise us all.
David and Greg
Since coming to New Zealand in 2004 he has made tremendous physical progress with help from his body coach, Greg Witika, from the Wairua Body Coaching System Gym. Dave’s right arm has built substantial muscle and his grip has strengthened. His left arm (the able one) is now a force to reckon with! This overall improved physical fitness has boosted his self-confidence and given him more energy and focus.
In 2015 David was a spectator at the first Wairua Warrior obstacle race (organised by Greg), and was so impressed he wanted to join in and climb one of the obstacles himself. Sadly fairly impossible, but Greg, seeing his enthusiasm decided, “Why not, with some training and a team of 4 we’ll have him do the 6km race”.
So the training began! And with it grew the desire to make this type of sporting activity accessible for people with physical and intellectual disabilities.
“Friends and colleagues here just seem to want to help David be more mobile and articulate and he has responded”. Barbara Trotter, (Dave’s Mom).
The Wairua Warrior is all about overcoming obstacles and there is no bigger obstacle than what David trained himself up for. Trivial day to day duties that we take for granted like getting up out of bed or tying our shoelace are frustrating and time consuming tasks for David. Yet, he refuses to take the easy way out. David is a Warrior and has a Warrior spirit and that is why the Wairua Warrior OCR Club was honoured and proud to have David Trotter as the 2016 Wairua Warrior Ambassador.
The Wairua Warrior OCR Club is all about camaraderie and learning how to tackle and overcome all obstacles both mental and physical.
Since David’s accident, his whole life has been about overcoming obstacles, which he does with tremendous vigour and determination and in turn, paves the way for us to learn from and to be inspired by.
Media Coverage of David’s Story: