Umina Unites for Megan
Megan Healey is a caring mother of three, a wife and a member of Umina Beach Surf Life Saving Club. Megan’s story has touched the lives of thousands of people, not just her friends at the club but around the Central Coast and the country.
Megan recently found out that she is one of the very few people who have been diagnosed with a very progressive form of Multiple Sclerosis.
The 45-year-old is one of the 23,000 Australians living with MS and although wheelchair bound she is not going to let that stop her. Megan has always been very active, whether it was playing tennis, riding horses, or the occasional bungee jump.
For the past 10 years, Megan, Brian and their three children, Sydney, Leilani and Finlay have been a part of Umina SLSC and have played a prominent role in all club events. This year’s State Championships will be extra special for Megan with all three children competing in the under 15s, 14s and 10s.
Paul Sharpe, President of Umina SLSC, has the utmost respect for Megan and her family and is very thankful for their commitment to the club.
“Megan is a positive person who despite her MS, is always willing to help out at the club and with anything to do with the kids. Whenever possible she attends the kids training sessions and competitions,” Paul Sharpe said.
Since Megan joined the Umina SLSC, she has officiated at all nipper carnivals but as her condition has progressively worsened, the mother of three has the job of supporting her children, at this year’s State Championships.
“I’ve always loved surf life saving and felt bad when I joined Umina SLSC because I wasn’t helping out, so I became an official,” Mrs Healey said.
“I would be helped into the ATV then carried over to the recording tent and I would even hand out medals to the nippers.”
Megan’s husband, Brian also puts a lot of time and effort into the club. He has been a nipper coach for years with Umina and gives up his free time to coach extra sessions of board training.
Apart from the family’s love for surf life saving, they have now split their time between Umina SLSC and Megan’s big bucket list. Megan has always been an adventurous person and loves being outdoors so to make sure she lives life to fullest, she has started a social-media fundraising and awareness initiative called ‘Megan’s Big Bucket List’.
The bucket list began by Megan and her family has gathered momentum thanks to people in her community who can assist with the activities.
“The response has been great! The positive comments and the bucket list are always growing. There are always lots of people willing to help with my bucket list and therefore ideas are always thrown around about possible activities,” Megan said.
“I was lucky enough to go in a helicopter at the end of February which was incredible but next on my bucket list is abseiling which will be interesting. The City to Surf is a major goal for my family and Umina SLSC, because the team is planning to pull me through the course.”
One of the most rewarding activities ticked off by Megan was the Australia Day ‘Big Ocean Swim’ from Palm Beach to Whale Beach.
The 2.5km swim was completed by Megan on a Jet Ski mat and floatation rescue tubes with the help of swimmers who brought Megan in successfully at Whale Beach.
“It’s remarkable and overwhelming, the amount of people that have given up their time to help. Kids as young as 12 are coming along and helping out at the fundraising events, which are amazing to see,” Megan said of her bucket list activities.
Paul Sharpe and members of Umina SLSC were more than happy to help out in the ocean swim and raise money for MS.
“When approached by the Healey family to help Megan with the swim, there was never a doubt that we could do it. It was very satisfying to see our nippers, seniors and masters coming together to complete the swim together and support not only Megan but each other,” the Umina President said.
For more information on Megan’s Big Bucket List, head to the links below.
The Healey family and members of Umina SLSC after the 'Big Ocean Swim'.
Thu 5 Mar 2015