We are very proud to say that Kevin Curtis is DAS’s Patron.

Kevin is a former Paralympic sailor who has won gold medals in the World Championships and Paralympic games and served on the Sports Advisory group for LOCOG, the organising committee for 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Kevin’s love was always sailing, but at the age of seventeen he had a very serious fall which caused him to become paralysed from the waist down and to have to use a wheelchair for mobility.

But with the dogged determination he applies to many aspects of his life, he relearnt how to sail and went on to win numerous international sailing awards to become an inspiration to us all.

Because of his sailing achievements, Kevin was selected to go to Barcelona for the World Championships in 1992 and was later put forward for the “Helmsman of the Year” and the prestigious “Yachtsman of the Year” awards, and was successful in both of these.

Both of these awards are open to everyone, not just disabled people, so Kevin’s achievements are an encouragement to anyone who has had to struggle against adversity.

To cap it all Kevin qualified for the British team in the Paralympics in Atlanta in 1996 and the team won the gold medal for Britain.

Kevin currently works for the Ipswich NHS Wheelchair Service. He is also a founder and trustee of the East Anglian Sailing Trust (EAST) based at the Suffolk Yacht Harbour at Levington. Its aim is to promote sailing for disabled people.

Wheelchair basketball has also benefited from Kevin’s input and he is especially enthusiastic about wheelchair tennis which he plays at Kesgrave Tennis Club and which is open to people that enjoy the game whether they are disabled or not.

Kevin’s awards include:

  • 1996 Gold medal, Paralympic Games, Atlanta
  • 1992 Gold medal, World Championships, Barcelona
  • 1992 Helmsman of the Year
  • 1992 BT Yachtsman of the Year

Welcome from Kevin Curtis

“This is my ninth year as Patron of the Disabled Advice service, the years have passed very quickly with numerous changes and a new office move to Martlesham Heath.

I have certainly enjoyed my involvement with the Bureau and its varied work. I can’t believe that in 2015 the charity will be celebrating 30 years!

I am a keen supporter of DAS because of my own disability and experience of working with people with disabilities.

When people contact DAS many of the queries raised are quickly and efficiently answered by DAS office staff.

I am involved with a number of local charities in the lpswich and District area and l’m keen to help all people with disabilities and their carers when I can.

Fundraising is always difficult in these times of money shortages, but the survival of any organisation is down to funding. I know DAS will appreciate and make good use of any donation you can make.

ln conclusion DAS has a terrific office team, management committee, everyone always has made me feel welcome”

Summer 2014

Listen to Kevin’s story on Vimeo

In this video Kevin tells of how he first started sailing as a result of his dad being posted to Cyprus with the RAF, how he broke his back and spent 9 months in Lodge Moor, Hospital Sheffield, training at Alton Water Sailing Club in Suffolk, attending his first major international event — the 1990 World Championships — and going on to win gold medals at the 1992 World Championships and 1996 Paralympic Games through to his work on the board of the British Olympic Association for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The Suffolk Lap of Honour website also includes a transcript of this video.