Paralysed Dursley Rugby Club player Rob Camm inspires hundreds with his determination

Rob Camm was a gifted rugby player and rower

Rob Camm, 20, with his sister Kirsty, 17

Rob Camm using the eye gaze system which allows him to use computers

First published in News
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Gazette Series: Photograph of the Author by , senior reporter covering Dursley, Cam, Wotton-under-Edge, Sharpness, Slimbridge, Berkeley, Coaley, Uley, North Nibley, Stinchcombe and Cambridge

A FORMER Dursley Rugby Club player is inspiring his friends and family with his determination to make the most of his life following a tragic car accident leaving him paralysed from the neck down.

Rob Camm, 20, from Berkeley, suffered a severe spinal injury in an accident in Dursley on September 15 last year – a week before he was due to start his studies at York University.

Mr Camm now suffers from tetraplegia which means he will spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair and requires a ventilator to breathe.

The active sportsman enjoyed playing rugby and was a keen rower before the accident and is determined to rebuild his life, inspiring those around him.

He currently lives at a specialist spinal unit in Salisbury but hopes to return home at some point so family and friends are fundraising to help meet the costs of the equipment he will need.

He has also recently been given an unconditional offer by Bristol University to study a degree in politics and philosophy in September.

As well as a hub for news about the various fundraising events being held by those close to Mr Camm, www.cammpaign4rob.co.uk is also home to his blog, where he records how he is learning to adapt to his new life.

His uncle Mike Camm from Sharpness, who runs the website, has described his nephew as a “shining light” in his determination to make the best of his life.

“The changes from where he was to now is unbelievable,” he said.

Mr Camm said Rob’s family, including parents Ian and Gillian and his17-year-old sister Kirsty wanted to thank everyone running events and were grateful for their support.

“The number of people and the range of groups giving up their time to support has been absolutely fantastic,” he said.

“We haven’t asked anybody to do anything. Everyone has elected to do this. We are very grateful and I know it gives Rob a great lift.”

One fundraiser is Sheryll Goddard who studied at Wycliffe College with the former prefect.

The 19-year-old from Minchinhampton is to take part in a 160ft bungee jump at the 02 Arena in London on Saturday, March 22 as she believes her friend is a "local hero".

“He has become an absolute inspiration to lots of people," she said.

“It was really heart-breaking to hear about the accident, which could have happened to anybody.”

The Stonehouse college is holding various fundraising events, including a Big Brother event on Friday, March 14, where students who will be locked away for the weekend and their antics captured on camera.

The college is also hosting the Run4Rob event on Saturday, May 31 which encourages people to walk or run any distance up to 26 miles on a designated course from the college.

Headteacher Margie Burnet Ward said she was struck by how determined he was to make the best of his situation.

"The way he has responded to this is really inspirational. There's nothing he thinks he cant do, and we want to support that," she said.

"He is a bright young man and a good example of the kind of person who the school is proud of."

To donate for Sheryll Goddard’s bungee jump, visit: www.gofundme.com/70hhao

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