NOBODY knows the power of determination and perseverance more than East Fremantle’s Rick Parish.
His young son Elliot was diagnosed with brain and spinal cancer in 2009 before, aged only four, he passed away in February this year.
Mr Parish had every reason to break down and shut himself off from the world, but instead he created the Telethon Adventurers, a fundraising group that takes part in daring feats to raise money for both cancer research and Princess Margaret Hospital.
Mr Parish’s hard work and dedication to helping WA’s sick children has earned him a nomination for the WA Australian of the Year Awards in the Local Hero category, to be announced on Saturday.
At this year’s Telethon, the Adventurers presented a cheque for $1.5 million.
In the next 12 months, Mr Parish is hoping to raise $2 million, enough to fund an upgrade to five vital pieces of equipment and two five-year fellowships among other things aimed at finding a cure for cancer.
Mr Parish said he was humbled by the nomination.
“Im surprised and excited that word has spread about what we are doing, and it is an honour to be nominated,” he said.
“The nomination enables me to spread the word about childhood cancer and get as many supporters onboard and get some national attention.
“It shows a fundamental feeling in the community that we as a society are grateful for people who go beyond the norm of what could be reasonably expected of citizens.”
The Telethon Adventurers have a number of events planned for the coming months, including shark diving in South Australia, climbing Gran Paradiso in Italy and Mont Blanc in France, bike riding from Brisbane to Perth, tandem skydiving and a Harley ride through the United States.
Visit www.theadventurers. com.au for more information on how to become an adventurer or donate.