Cairns’ local legend and dual Tokyo Paralympic medallist, Grant “Scooter” Patterson, was proudly presented with the Keys to the City at Tobruk Memorial Pool on Friday.
The joyful homecoming event was open to the public, with the first 500 people through the gate receiving a “Go Scooter” bandana.
Kicking off the celebrations, Scooter was treated to a lap of honour around the Tobruk Pool on the back of a trike Harley, while his swimming club also stood together to form a guard of honour.
Video messages congratulating Scooter came from his old high school, fellow Paralympian and good mate Ahmed Kelly, as well as Dayne Zorko, captain of his beloved Brisbane Lions.
Scooter cut a large cake bearing the now well-known image of him biting his Paralympic silver medal and the iconic Dawn Fraser OAM presented Scooter life membership to Tobruk pool.
Known as Scooter because of the tricycle he rides everywhere, he claimed two medals at the Tokyo Paralympics – a bronze in the 150m individual medley and a silver in 50m breaststroke.
This was Scooter’s second Paralympics, having previously represented Australia at the 2012 London Games, where he swam in two finals but unfortunately did not make the podium.
He narrowly missed selection for the 2016 Paralympics in Rio, but with true resilience and grit fought, back to claim his spot at the Tokyo Games.
The recipient of Cairns Regional Council’s Sportsperson of the Year at the 2021 Australia Day Awards, he became a crowd favourite during the Tokyo Games through his inspiring performances and great sense of humour on pool deck.