“Pretty much since I was seven, I had a little plastic tricycle,” Patterson said. “Someone made me one out of steel, then my brother made me one out of aluminum. I still have that now. It needs an overhaul. “

Patterson has a curvature of the spine and mild arthritis. His shoulder hurts every time he steps into the pool, but he’s a tough customer.

“I was such an independent person growing up and a bit of a larrikin and a character. I was raised to go out and try. I wasn’t wrapped in a bubble when I was a kid.

Grant ‘Scooter’ Patterson

“I don’t listen when my body says ‘ouch’. I keep pushing, ”Patterson said. “You can either sit there and complain about the world and your pain, or you can go on and try to do something from nothing.”

As for his disability, Patterson is a self-deprecating character and has no qualms about calling himself a “dwarf”. He explains why.

“I love to make fun of myself and everyone,” Patterson said. “Life is too short. Look at me, I’m a little ass.

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“People worry about the word ‘dwarf,’ but the point is, I’m a dwarf. I am small, a dwarf. As long as they’re not derogatory to you.

“You have 52 weeks in the year and there will be more than one person a week who will say something about your height or your stature. If you get mad every time you’re gonna be miserable for the rest of your life, right?

“I was such an independent person growing up and a bit of a larrikin and a character. I was brought up to go out and try. I wasn’t wrapped in a bubble when I was a kid.

“A lot of kids whose parents are disabled, it’s easy to fall behind and do everything for them, but you have to remember that if you do everything for them, they won’t learn to do things by them- same. They are struggling in the real world and the real world is tough.

He’s been with coach Herbie Howards for 13 years – “longer than the average Australian marriage” – and if he can clinch a medal, after more than a decade with the Australian squad, the roof of the roof of the center aquatic of Tokyo to be lifted.

A Scooter Medal is something you won’t want to miss.

“I can feel the nerves start to come in, but I’ve worked hard with my trainer and my personal trainer,” Patterson said. “I’m just supporting myself.”

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