Scuba Diving Success For Disabled Man
by Anthony Williams
(Newport, S. Wales UK.)
courtesy of Ben 'pc repairs' Thompson
“Josh should be very proud of achieving his sports diver qualification.” Mary Tetley, the chief executive of British Sub Aqua Club (BSAC), the national governing body for scuba diving, said recently regarding Josh Davies’s success.
It comes 3 years after Josh, a 21-year-old former rugby player from Wales, broke his back in two places. It happened when a tree Josh and his stepfather were working on suddenly fell down and crushed him. The accident that took place on their private farmland left Josh from Pontlliw, Swansea, permanently paralysed from the lower abdomen down.
However, undeterred by his injuries, Welshman Josh defied all the odds and acquired his latest scuba diving qualification. And, what more, thanks to the fundraising efforts of his dive buddies managed to obtain his latest qualification in Lanzarote, Spain.
Altogether, his scuba chums from the BSAC in Llwchwr, Swansea, raised £2,000 or more for the trip to the warm-watered, Canaries getaway.
Josh had attained his first diving qualification in colder British waters. But, owing to the lower temperature of the water, he could only spend a short time submerged in it keening his scuba skills. As it inevitably always affected his body by reducing his already limited movement. It was seeing these difficulties Josh encountered every time he dived that finally galvanized the other members into taking action.
The warmer waters of Lanzarote afforded Josh more time to learn essential skills needed to pass his second qualification, with him achieving up to two dives a day as a result. Josh said his time in Lanzarote was amazing and was grateful to everyone that helped raise the funds for the trip. In addition, he mentioned how Dai Mathias, who he has known for several years, was really great to him, as was the other 15 divers in attendance.
He said he wasn’t treated any different from anyone else and that he even had to take care of his own kit. A trailer at the back of his wheel-chair was used to pull everything around with him whenever they traveled back and forth from the diving spots.
“I saw so many different fish in the water including angel sharks, big groupers, octopuses and millions of damsel fish.
“However, I still had to do all the required stuff, like show that I can rescue an unconscious diver. There is no special treatment because I’m not able bodied.”
Also commenting, Dai Mathias said that Josh had to work twice as hard as an able bodied person. But, despite all the obstacles he faced, he never considered stopping.