A man who was paralysed from the neck down is celebrating a hat-trick of good news – including becoming a dad.
John Power was just 18 when he suffered a devastating rugby injury which left him confined to a wheelchair.
Despite an abrupt end to his professional rugby league career John is proving that it wasn’t the end of life as he knew it – in fact it was just the beginning.
Now 16 years on the 34-year-old is celebrating after scooping a new job, world record title and welcoming his first child into the world.
John, who lives with his wife Julie in Grotton, said: “Julie and I were delighted to hear we were going to be blessed with a child and that the due date was October 3 – our first wedding anniversary.
“Our beautiful baby girl Ellie-Beth arrived two days early on October 1. She is in perfect health and is the pride of her parents’ eyes.”
Just weeks after Ellie-Beth’s arrival John had yet more reason to celebrate after finding out he had earned himself a world record.
John’s world record attempt took place last year when he completed a charity indoor rowing marathon using only his arms.
He said: “What I didn’t know is that nobody has ever attempted to do a rowing marathon using just their arms before so it turned out to be the world record
“I completed it in five hours and 26 minutes thanks to the support of my physio Collin Green.”
His efforts raised £1,700 for Try Assist – the rugby league benevolent fund which has supported John throughout his recovery.
John, who has recently started working for a Sheffield-based E-learning company as well as running his own website business, is now training to complete a wheelchair marathon.
He said: “Since the accident I have always pushed myself not to let the wheelchair get in my way.
“The past 12 months have been truly amazing – I never thought all this good luck would come my way in such a short space of time.
“Marrying Julie, being employed, getting a world record and to top it all off having a little miracle like Ellie-Beth.
“I feel so lucky. I’m the happiest man alive.”