ONE OF THE WORLD'S LONGEST SURVIVING HEART- LUNG RECIPIENTS
Still inspiring others
Brad's story began when he was diagnosed at 7 months with the incurable lung disease Cystic Fibrosis (CF) and given no hope of survival. By the age of 6 he realized his life, healthwise, was going nowhere and believed he would be dead by the age of 10.
Frustrated with what life had dealt him, he decided to turn that frustration into determination and his 7th Birthday wish was 'To be around one day when there would be a cure or some sort of treatment to free me of CF'. But according to the doctors, he had no hope whatsoever of achieving this seemingly impossible dream. Although his body continued to get weaker and weaker, his mind stayed as strong as ever, never giving up on his 7th Birthday wish.
After 18 years following his 7th birthday wish, it came true by Brad surviving one of Australia's first Heart and Double Lung Transplants at The Alfred hospital, Melbourne. In fact, it was also Australia's first 3-Way Domino Transplant (1990) where he gave his old heart to a girl needing a heart transplant, and became Australia's first live heart donor.
In 1991 Brad began work as Promotions Officer at Cystic Fibrosis South Australia, undertaking public speaking engagements to educate school and University students and also Service Club members. He also uses these occasions to inspire his audiences. In 1996 Brad also established a motivational
speaker business - www.believeyourdream.com
Unfortunately, on 8 May 2009 due to high blood pressure from his transplant drugs, Brad suffered a massive near fatal stroke; a 6cm bleed to the right side of his brain. Brad said, "I'm told not many people actually ever recover from this". However, once again his positive attitude has seen him fight his way back to the extent where he has just regained his driver's licence. Brad has also returned to his job as Promotions Officer at Cystic Fibrosis South Australia.
Brad is putting his new treadmill to good use. He enjoys walking on it twice a day for 20 minutes each time. He continually strives to restrengthen his left leg to improve his walking. He is staying positive that one day he will regain the use of his left arm, which became paralysed from the stroke.
An avid participant in the Australian Transplant Games, Brad has won 29 medals in a variety of sports from five Games. The 2010 Games in Canberra is in his sights and an invitation to be involved in the World Transplant Games to be held in Sweden in 2011 has just arrived as a keynote speaker. And who knows he might even be a competitor. As you can see Brad has never lost that positive attitude!
Finally, it seems the Brad Taylor story is going to be written in a book, how exciting! Brad is currently working with one of the large Publishing Houses in Adelaide, Wakefield Press. Brad hopes that this will allow him to take his message further afield.
Brad's story was part of the article on page 3 of The Age on Monday 1 March 2010 which featured the achievements of The Alfred Transplant Unit since its establishment 21 years ago.
A copy of the original Age front page cover story on his 3-Way Domino Transplant in 1990 was also included in the article. As a follow up, Brad was interviewed for South Australian television.