Richie McCaw has spoken about the eye-opening moment he shared with an 18-year-old who suffered devastating injuries while playing rugby.
In a video shared on his Facebook page on Friday, the former captain of the All Blacks speaks about meeting the teenager, while also calling for people to donate to spinal cord research how to lose fat fast.
“I’ve been lucky throughout my life to do some pretty cool stuff, you know, play rugby, travel around the world, and now get to fly these things,” the former openside flanker said, gesturing to a fleet of Christchurch Rescue Helicopters behind him.
“But if I didn’t have the use of my legs, which is the reality for a number of people both in New Zealand and around the world, then that wouldn’t be possible.”
“There was a young fella, about 18, in there that had had an accident playing rugby and I guess that’s when it really hit home,” he said.
He said it made him realise how lucky he was to have the use of his legs.
“Something I was doing the day before…I could have been in that situation,” the 35-year-old said.
In the clip, McCaw encouraged Kiwis to donate $3 to The CatWalk Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Trust by texting WALK to 2448.
McCaw is a patron for Catwalk, which was founded in 2005 by Catriona Williams, formerly one of New Zealand’s leading international equestrian riders.
Following a riding accident in 2002, Williams is now C6/C7 tetraplegic and confined to a wheelchair.
Initially, a group of friends had planned to fundraise for Williams herself, but she decided to go a step further, and CatWalk was born.
CatWalk raises funds to support the body of scientific opinion which says a cure for SCI will be found.