Rachel’s Story

My name is Rachel Hooley and I am 8 years old. I had a heart transplant at the freeman hospital on the 10th February 2012.

While I was in hospital my family and I got told all about the British Transplant games. The Games are a chance to meet other children and their families that have had transplants all across the country and that you can compete in different sports activities and there are also social events to go to. (Mummy said it did not matter if you were good at sport or not. It was a chance to enter and have fun)

As it was 6 months after my transplant I was allowed to enter so we decided to go. It was being held in Kent this year in a town called Gillingham.

I entered in the obstacle course, table tennis, long jump and the 50 meters run. I had never done any of them before.

On the first day we went to the opening ceremony which was out of this world. You got to walk in a procession with your team into Rochester Cathedral. My friend Lewis and I got to carry the Freeman banner as it was our first games. (Here I am in the picture on the left)

The next day I was competing in the obstacle course and the table tennis. We got the bus which was put on for us to the sports hall. The atmosphere was great. Loads of children were there that had all different types of transplants were looking so well. I competed in the obstacle course and was so surprised to come second and get a Silver Medal. My Mum and Dad were really surprised too. Next I did the table tennis and came third and got a Bronze medal. I was so happy again. So was Mum and Dad.

That night we went to Dickens world. It was brilliant. I loved the water ride and the magician and we stayed out until late.

On the final day I had my last two sports which were the long jump and the 50 metres.

In the long jump I only managed two jumps as I was so tried. Also I wanted to watch my friend Kaylee run in the 100m because she was trying to qualify for the World Transplant Games next year.

Finally I did the 50 meters and was fast enough to qualify for final. In the final I came second and got a Silver medal. The medal was presented to me on a podium. I thought my mum would never stop crying because she was so happy and my dad just kept taking photos.

I was so happy and surprised to get a Silver in the obstacle course, a Silver in the 50 metres race and a Bronze in the table tennis.

 

On the final night we were invited to a Gala dinner. It was great as I got to wear a dress. I had a brill time eating and dancing but there was another big surprise because I won the” Best New Athlete Trophy” I got to go on the stage and have the trophy presented to me and lots of people clapped and took my photo.

 

The best part about the games was meeting other children just like me and having fun. (and especially winning the trophy)

The weekend was the best and I can’t wait to go to Sheffield next year hopefully with a bigger and better children’s Freeman team.

Rachel Hooley

For Rachel’s Press release please click on the following link:

Click here for the press release